The owners of The Jibarito Stop, a popular food truck in Pilsen, Chicago, have opened a restaurant of the same name, serving Puerto Rican cuisine on 18th street. The restaurant, also called The Jibarito Stop, held its soft opening on Wednesday, October 7, and will reopen on Friday.
The popular food truck, launched three years ago by Pilsen residents Cely Rodriguez and Moraima Fuentes, is known for its namesake sandwich, the jibarito — a breadless sandwich featuring seared steak or other protein, fried plantains, lettuce, tomato, cheese, peas, and yellow rice.
The food truck continues to be popular, but the owners frequently ran into issues trying to sell its most famous item, as it became too expensive to outfit the truck so that it would be ready for the downtown lunch rush.
“So when we found this place, we jumped on it,” Fuentes, told DNA Info.
On Wednesday, during the restaurant’s grand opening, theyserved triple the amount of food during lunch that Fuentes and Rodriguez would typically sell in the truck during the same time slot. The restaurant was forced to stay closed Thursday in order to restock its supplies.
“We were not expecting the overwhelming response that we did,” said Fuentes.
If all goes well, the new restaurateurs, both the first women in their families to graduate college, told DNA Info that they plan to open more restaurants in Chicago and the East Coast.