It started as “a little crazy idea that we had,” said Juan Grimaldo, who owns a family of restaurants with his wife, Danielle. “We noticed that we have a lot of middle school to high school students visiting Totopo. So, we’re opening a place for them—a place where they can come in and order and be on their way.”
Poco Loco is slated to open by the end of the month at 698 Washington Road, the former home of Bull River Taco. Its target audience is students and folks in the workforce looking for a quick lunch that doesn’t require sit-down service.
Poco Loco is a pilot program, with a three-year lease for the space, Grimaldo said. The fast casual restaurant will be run by familiar faces to Totopo fans: sisters Estefany and Diana Suarez.
“It’s very casual,” Diana said.
The items will be different than what you find at Totopo, with their own take on on your favorite Mexican foods. The restaurant will feature a small menu with nachos, burritos, burrito bowls, quesadillas, build your own salads, tacos and a specialty for the kids: walking tacos. Each has their own fun name, like Nacho Libre and the Leborrito. They’ll also serve up a Choco Loco Taco, a chocolate taco with vanilla ice cream inside.
“The goal—and our challenge—is to make it different,” Grimaldo said.
Poco Loco will even have a Pepsi machine where you can choose your own flavor shots to add, something Estefany says she thinks will be a hit with kids.
The restaurant is a nice addition to the Grimaldos restaurant family: Totopo is family oriented, while Shadyside-based Tocayo is more upscale. “Poco Loco is fast, casual, kid friendly,” Grimaldo said.