Lucharitos, Greenport’s super popular taqueria and margarita bar, is opening an Aquebogue location.
The new restaurant, which will be called Little Lucharitos and will have a similar theme and menu as its Greenport counterpart, is expected to open April 1, according to owner Marc LaMaina.
LaMaina signed the lease on the 800-square-foot space earlier this week. It is located at 487 Main Road, the former home of North Fork Tobacco.
“I wanted to build a brand and see how far we can take it,” said LaMaina. “I live in Aquebogue so we’re a part of the community. I think it will fit in well there.”
The eatery will have 16 seats inside, a full bar and an outdoor seating area when it opens next spring. Expect a simplified menu of tacos, nachos, burritos and quesadillas, LaMaina said. The restaurant’s head chef will split his time between the eateries to ensure the food is consistent.
LaMaina said he had spent more than a year searching for a locale on the western end of the North Fork and probably scouted 18 to 20 spots before signing the lease. He’ll be working with architect Jeff Zahn of Riverhead to design the new space, which needs a kitchen.
“When I walked in there, I had a good feeling about it,” he said of the Aquebogue location. “I’m nervous in a good way. We’ll see.”
LaMaina opened Lucharitos in late 2012 after Hurricane Sandy dealt a heavy blow to the eatery he used to operate out of the same space — Butta Cakes, a cupcake shop. Since then, it has quickly blossomed into a popular destination, requiring an expansion and doubling in size in 2015.
LaMaina, whose wife Jennifer owns Bright and Early Discoveries daycare in downtown Riverhead, joked that the original restaurant is dedicated to his oldest son JoJo, while the new eatery is in honor of his younger son Jasper.
“If we want to open a third restaurant, we’ll have to have another kid,” he said.