Masterful Maestro: Meet Maestro

August 15, 2023 | Posted in Food

Upscale Mexican cuisine, live Mariachi, and Mezcal cocktails harmonize beautifully at Maestro

(This story originally appeared in the Visit Pasadena 2023 Summer Guide in print.)

When childhood friends Sergio Martinez, Paul Gonzales, and Emmanuel Gonzales opened Maestro in January 2017, they were intent on creating an authentic representation of Mexican food and culture. “It’s close to what you see in Guadalajara, Mexico City, or San Miguel de Allende,” says Paul Gonzales. “We felt Los Angeles needed more of an upscale experience.”

Maestro stands out for many reasons, starting with the ambience — a perfect date night with its live music most nights of the week. As for the food, Gonzales touts the scallops with huitlacoche, barbacoa-style lamb shank, and chilean sea bass with citrus orange glaze.

And don’t forget the cocktails, he adds: “We have one of the best mezcal and tequila selections in the city with [more than] 250 agave spirits.” While all three of the owners’ families are from Los Altos de Jalisco, they all grew up in Southern California — Paul and Sergio in El Monte and Emmanuel in the San Fernando Valley.

Now in business together, they love being a part of the Pasadena community, mainly because it’s a foodie haven. Gonzales notes: “The [people of Pasadena] really know good food!”