LEWISTON, N.Y. (WIVB) — “It’s not just the food, it’s not just the flavors–it’s the community built around it.”

Andrew Mackmin, and his wife Sandra Ortiz are the owners of Taquito Lindo, a restaurant that serves artisanal tacos. The idea sparked when during COVID, Mackmin and Ortiz, wanted to perfect their Al Pastor recipe, and decided to open a restaurant in Grand Island in 2021.

“We were really just trying to find the regular flavors that are from my wife’s region in Central Mexico, because we couldn’t find them to our liking here,” said Mackmin. “The flavors are one thing, the community’s the other, and really we wanted to bring the authentic street food experience to Buffalo from Mexico.”

There are authentic tacos to choose from on the menu, from Tacos Al Pastor, to Cochinita Pibil Tacos, to Pork Belly and more.

“I’m impressed, I lived in Mexico for about two years, that’s how I met my wife, but these give us the flavors that when we go out to a street kiosk,” said Mackmin.

In honor of Cinco de Mayo, at their Lewiston Restaurant, they are serving dollar tacos, and they are holding an event at their Grand Island location with all you can eat and drink for $50, with live music.

They also helped start “Panchos Legacy Lager,” in collaboration with 12 Gates, to create a Mexican Lager in honor of Ezra Castro, also known as Pancho Billa, who passed away on May 14, 2019. They donate 5.14 percent of the beer sales to a local charity.

Taquito Lindo is preparing for a busy day on Cinco de Mayo at both locations.

“It’s actually very interesting it’s often confused with Mexican Independence Day–which it’s not,” said Mackmin.

Cinco de Mayo marks the day Mexican troops beat the French army in the battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.

“In Mexico, it’s not celebrated on a national basis, just like patriots day in Massachusetts is not celebrated on a national basis,” said Mackmin. “But because there was a great migration from that part of Mexico in the late 19th/20th century, these traditions were brought with the people of Puebla, called Poblanos, and these customs and celebrations were brought along with them.”

For more information on the Cinco De Mayo celebrations, visit their website here.

Hope Winter is a reporter and multimedia journalist who has been part of the News 4 team since 2021. See more of her work here.