I got the idea backpacking around California one summer, and after waiting for a few years for someone to open a burrito bar in Glasgow eventually decided if I wanted a burrito I’d just have to do it myself. To start off I spent a couple of months in the US trying out different burrito and taco chains, then spent a year or so developing recipes and finding premises, and Taco Mazama was born.
What’s the best piece of business advice you could give?
Know how to do every single task in your company and what the difference is between it being done well or done badly. You don't need to be able to chop as fast as the chef or be as organised as the office manager but if you don't know the process, you can't manage it. But don't be afraid to delegate to people that can do it better!
Where would you like to see your business in 5 years’ time?
I'd like to us to be large enough to be able to be able to experiment more. There are some amazing Mexican dishes that are virtually unknown here, and as a small business it’s difficult to develop a market for a new or unknown product, the bigger you get, the easier that is.
If you could only cook one of your own products/recipes, what would it be & why?
Guacamole! Definitely Guacamole. It’s impossible to buy pre-made, goes with pretty much everything (Guacamole omelettes, shouldn’t work, but do!) and is really good for you as well. Does it count as cooking though?
You can invite one person (living or dead) to your last meal – Who would it be and why? …and what’s on the menu?
Ah, well it'd have to be someone dead as I could invite living people anytime. I'd be inclined to pick someone that could make a meal last a really, really long time as well. A Roman emperor maybe, as far I can remember from history they had dinner parties that lasted for days. I think I'd leave the menu up to them - I'm always keen to try new things, and when in Rome...
Written by Gerry Haughian