by Kristina Domitrovich // photos by Lindsay Pace
In 1998, Juan Carlos Acosta moved from his hometown of Zacatecas, Mexico, to Tupelo to be closer to family. Along the way, he always knew he wanted to open a restaurant, but worked in construction for 18 years. In August 2015, he took the first steps to achieve his goals by opening Taquería Ferrus.
He never had experience in the food industry, but his cousin and brand manager Jacqueline Acosta said he would cook for their family get-togethers regularly.
“He’s always been well known to be a good cook,” she said.
Part of that always included one key, Juan-Carlos-Acosta staple: a radish cut to resemble a flower. His cousin said that he likes to make things look nice. Now that flower-carved radish is kind of a calling card for Taquería Ferrus. Every dish is served with fresh toppings like cilantro and onions, a charred jalapeno and, of course, the recognizable radish.
Tacos de asada with the signature charred jalapeno and flower-cut radish.
The truck serves three main options – tacos, quesadillas or tortas. The protein options vary from chicken, shrimp or steak, but patrons can also request cow’s tongue or lamb.
From the start, it’s always been owned and operated by him and his family.
Acosta said “taquería” translates to a quicker restaurant or vendor, but not a fast-food equivalent.
“It’s not taking the time to make beans and rice,” she explained.
When he first started out, Tequería Ferrus was a smaller truck. Over the years, business has grown enough to allow for a larger truck, which was acquired in 2019 and now stays parked on West Main in Tupelo.
However, with the smaller truck, the crew is looking to expand and maybe have two trucks throughout the area. The end goal is still the same as the initial plan: One day, Acosta wants to open a restaurant.