Hans Peter Meyer
Special to The Record
What did Harvey and Jesus Miller miss most about living in Mexico (besides the sun)? Real corn tortillas.
They’d returned to the Comox Valley and were operating a small breakfast and lunch restaurant. Jesus started making tortillas for personal use, and for the restaurant. Soon, they were selling more tortillas than breakfasts. Putting the restaurant behind them, they’ve been making tortillas full-on ever since.
More than tortillas
But tortillas aren’t the only thing you’ll find at Abuelo’s.
“We sell chips, salsa, refried beans, mango salsa, pineapple salsa, pico de gallo – the traditional tomato salsa,” Harvey says.
They also sell salsa verde, made with tomatillos, cilantro, serano peppers, and garlic grown on their property. If you’re lucky, you’ll also find chimmichurri sauce, a piquant parsley and chile blend often associated with Argentinean asados.
Comox Valley Farmers’ Market roots
Outside the restaurant, the Market was the first place that Jesus and Harvey started selling their product.
Today, you’ll find Abuelo’s products in over 30 retail stores on the Island and in Vancouver. You’ll see their tortillas on menus in many finer restaurants – 15 of them, from Anglers’ Inn in Campbell River to Wild Poppy Bistro in Ladysmith. On Hornby Island, their blue tortillas are so popular in the summer that Verizo Espresso sells 100 dozen a week!
Success doesn’t mean Abuelo’s has left the Market. You’ll see Harvey and Jesus every Saturday, inside and out. Harvey says the market gives them direct contact with customers, in a way that retail and restaurants can’t.
“We get to hear what people like, and why,” Harvey says. “We also get to introduce new products.”
New flavours, what a good reason to visit the market!
FMI see AbuelosCornTortillas.com.