Paola and Heriksen Hein capture the essence of Mexican cuisine
The bold, vibrant and complex flavours of authentic Mexican food have become a part of the neighbourhood!
Paola and Heriksen Hein are bringing their Latin American passion for Mexican food and culture to Newton’s lovely new restaurant Salsa and Guacamole, (located right under another famous and popular dining spot, The Old Surrey Restaurant).
Paola came to Canada to study English and French but stayed here and studied to become a pilot.
“I started school to become a pilot. Then, when I got married and decided that that was not the best option for having a family and taking care of my babies, so I never flew professionally — only for fun with my husband, a pilot.” She said.
She met her husband in Vancouver.
“He was trying to find an apartment to live in, and I was showing him the apartment of a friend that was away on holiday in Mexico. Heriksen came along to rent the apartment. We ended up chatting about aviation, and we had a lot of things in common.”
“Two years later, we married, and four years later, we had our daughter Chloe.”
“No couple is perfect, but let me tell you that my husband and I complement each other in many, many ways.” Paola added.
“In 2020, after the pandemic started, I started my side business (making fresh salsa and guacamole) while working full time. I realized how fulfilling it was to deliver food to people and how much they loved it.”
“I decided to change careers again and start my own business. And now, here I am — with an amazing husband and daughter supporting me on this adventure.”
A great opportunity came along by leasing the lower level of the Old Surrey Restaurant.
“Philip Aguirre, (the owner) is amazing, and we thought he would be an excellent person to lease from. That is how we ended up in Newton.” she said.
As soon as you enter the restaurant, the delicious flavours of Mexico seduce the senses. The menu results from Paola’s being a little homesick for her mom and grandma’s food.
So, she replicated the recipes and enjoyed much more authentic food than was available anywhere locally.
Her signature dish — chilaquiles (red and green), are a very popular family dish throughout Mexico.
Chilaquiles are proper Mexican soul food. If you’ve never had chilaquiles, you’re in for a treat. A homey melange of slightly chewy tortillas simmered up with forthright flavours of peppers or tomatillos – almost like a rustic Mexican pasta dish.
Her original signature dishes — salsa and guacamole are still available as a take-out item, as well as tacos and enchiladas.
Crispy, sweet and delicious churros are Heriksen’s recipe, and are a perfect ending to the end of a delightful meal.
Of course, Mexican food is perfectly paired with good tequila, and many labels and curated cocktails are available.
A new project which will showcase their fine tequila collection is in the works. “We want to make an experience in our restaurant where people can try and understand all types of tequila. Just like beer, we may offer our own tequila flights. Is going to be amazing for those who love tequila,” Paola said.
Discover the flavours of an authentic Mexican kitchen, the kind attention to detail in service, and beautifully crafted cocktails. It’s time to go on a little vacation and visit Salsa and Guacamole.
Paola says it best. “Our approach to people is to make them get away from their daily routine and feel like they are in a holiday mode. I want them to know that we care about them and want to make sure their experience at our restaurant is perfect and they feel like always going back.”
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