The ribbon cutting for Rudy’s Kitchen was held April 17 in Van Alstyne. The new restaurant at 349 Henry Hynds Expressway is among the newest members to the Chamber of Commerce in the city.

Rudy Martinez has more than 18 years of restaurant experience, having started as his uncle’s bakery and restaurant in Albuquerue, New Mexico. He also worked as chef at a Cheesecake Factory, was manager at On the Border Mexican Grill & Cantina, and is now the hands-on proprietor, along with his wife, of Rudy’s Kitchen.

“I love to cook. I do a lot of things, but cooking is what I do best,” Rudy said. “And it means something when I see somebody taking the bowl to their lips and finishing the stew. It means we did something good in the back, and that makes us (he and his wife) so happy.”

The restaurant serves menudo, caldo de res which is a beef stew, street tacos, gorditas and burritos, several breakfast items, and other specialties that are true Mexican cuisine, rather than Tex-Mex.

After making a go of the first Rudy’s Kitchen in Frisco, Martinez decided to expand. He said they looked around at several towns and decided that Van Alstyne “was the best place to bring it.”

Chamber President Barbie Griffin asked Martinez to talk about his menu and his hours before the ribbon was cut during the April 17 ceremony. Martinez explained that the restaurant is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

He also said that the are already catering.

“We can have your event catered, or deliver special items, such as breakfast burritos to your work place,” he said.

Rudy’s Kitchen also does take out orders.

“We make our flour and corn tortillas by hand,” he added.

Martinez also talked about how much joy he receives when someone enjoys their Rudy’s Kitchen meals.

“I love when I see somebody eating a taco,” he said. “And they first bite, and I see them look at the other person to talk about it. They stop whatever they were talking about and change the conversation totally.”

Rudy also said he is excited to have been welcomed to the community.