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Traditional Oaxacan cuisine has officially hit the streets of Patchogue.
Spirits were high and the mezcal was flowing Monday as the community gathered to celebrate the opening of Ruta Oaxaca, one of the seven new businesses to join Patchogue Village this month.
Several speakers, including Legislator Dominick Thorne and Patchogue Chamber’s executive director David Kennedy, said a few words welcoming the new restaurant to 30 E. Main St. (the old Swell Taco space).
“It’s a great day in Patchogue,” Kennedy exclaimed. “This place is awesome.”
Owner Jose Castillo opened his first restaurant in January 2021 in Astoria and he said a few months later while out on Long Island with his wife, Iris, they spotted the vacant Main Street location in Patchogue.
He said immediately the energy just felt right, and 14 months later, it became home to their second Ruta Oaxaca.
“We’re a family-oriented kind of place with a fun environment and a lot of great Mexican tequilas and mezcals, and traditional food,” said Castillo. “We want everyone to feel like this is their house.”
The restaurant’s menu goes far beyond tacos, allowing diners to travel south through Mexico, as the eatery’s name — meaning en route to Oaxaca — implies.
Castillo noted that some of the menu items he believes will become bestsellers include the grilled seabass, enchiladas verde, New York strip and the costilla istmenas (slow-cooked baby-back ribs.)
The owner said as the weather gets nicer, they are working on designing an outdoor dining area in the back of the restaurant.
“The support has been incredible and people really enjoy our concept,” Castillo said. “We know we can bring something different to Patchogue.”
Read the full story below of how Ruta Oaxaca came to be.
Scroll down to view photos from the restaurant’s ribbon-cutting ceremony on April 18. All photos were taken by Nicholas Grasso.
Top: Owner Jose Castillo, Iris Castillo, and chef Carlos Arellano after cutting the ribbon for Ruta Oaxaca.