Maestro might be a fairly recent addition to the Pasadena food scene, but its serious take on Mexican cuisine, and extensive list of artisinal agave spirits has it at the top of the local table list.
Pasadena magazine: “Mexican Restaurant” can conjure pretty generic descriptions, but Maestro is anything but generic. What is your thumbnail description of your restaurant?
Sergio Martinez: Authentic without the stereotype. We want to represent the food, culture and spirit (of Mexico) at the highest level.
PM: What attracted you to Pasadena.
Sergio: That’s easy. The diversity.
PM: What is your favorite dish?
SM: I always go through phases. Right now, maybe the lamb shank. But really, we always recommend ordering to share—a communal meal where you can open up your palate to new flavors and ingredients you maybe haven’t tried before.
PM: Other than Maestro, what is your favorite Pasadena restaurant?
SM: I like what Bone Kettle and Union are doing. But basically, I love going to places where they care about the food. Sometimes you find the most passion in the little holes in the wall.
PM: Mezcal or Tequila?
SM: Well, even though I’m from Jalisco, I think right now it’s gotta be mezcal!