Ozzie Fernandez opening taqueria and bar concept near LSU campus

    A taqueria and bar called MODESTO Tacos Tequila Whiskey is moving into the Southgate Village Shopping Center space formerly occupied by Breck’s Bistro.

    Ozzie Fernandez, Go Eat Concepts founder and CEO, is adding the Mexican concept to his growing portfolio of restaurants, which include LIT Pizza, Izzo’s Illegal Burrito, Rocca Pizzeria and Central Kitchen. Once it opens in January, MODESTO will neighbor LIT Pizza, also located within the LSU-area strip center.

    “LSU draws people from across the state, which gives us great exposure beyond Baton Rouge as we continue expanding MODESTO and our other restaurant concepts beyond the capital region,” says Fernandez in a prepared statement, describing the new restaurant’s fare as “a more Mex than Tex flavor highlighting regional tacos across Mexico.”

    The 2,600-square-foot restaurant will offer family-style dining, drawing inspiration from family recipes and Fernandez’s travels across Mexico. He’s teaming with chef J.B. Bell to create a menu that features botanas (small plates) and traditional tacos, including al pastor cooked on a trompo (vertical rotisserie), carne asada, pollo adobado, local fish tacos, Oaxacan style carnitas and slow-roasted barbacoa, all on homemade corn tortillas. Among other offerings are queso fundido, flautas and gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian options.

    MODESTO will also feature a full-service bar offering a selection of specialty tequilas and mezcals, curated margaritas and whiskey cocktails, overseen by Taylor Myers, the beverage director at Rocca Pizzeria. Outdoor dining space will be included in the restaurant’s design.

    The concept marks the latest in several new and planned restaurant opening announcements by Fernandez and business partner Gordon McKernan, with the pair planning an aggressive expansion of LIT Pizza and MODESTO restaurants across Louisiana and neighboring states.

    View Comments