Emerging Brands

How Jared Galbut turned his Florida-born taqueria into a dining and nightlife destination

Bodega Taqueria y Tequila’s winning combo of street tacos, frozen drinks, DJs and bar food is positioning the concept for growth.

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 “Cinco de Mayo is like Super Bowl and New Year’s packed into one,” said Jared Galbut, founder and CEO of Bodega Taqueria y Tequila. As celebrants flock to Mexican restaurants and bars on Friday, he expects record crowds, with a number of revelers partying until 5 a.m.—closing time for some of the seven locations.

jared galbut
Jared Galbut

The newest Bodega is actually opening on May 5 in Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood, far north of its South Florida roots. More are planned for Nashville and other parts of Florida this year and into 2024. The concept’s menu of Cuban-accented street tacos, frozen cocktails and handcrafted tequila signatures—along with spirited DJs—has proven a winning combination.

Listen as Galbut shares how Bodega’s flexible model can position it as a fast-casual, hybrid or full-service restaurant, how the menu and concept has evolved and his plans for future growth.

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