Show 489, September 3, 2022: Zapien’s Hatch Pepper Roast with Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill, Pico Rivera

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and Taqueria

Every year Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Taqueria in Pico Rivera goes all out to celebrate the short Hatch Pepper season. His concluding Hatch Chile event is Zapien’s Hatch Pepper Roast set for Saturday, September 10th from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. It also includes a Hatch Brunch menu in the restaurant showcasing brunch favorites prepared with Hatch Peppers. An Action Station includes Omelettes and Eggs to Order, Hatch-Brown Sugar Glazed Bone-In Ham, and Belgian Waffles and Fresh Berries. Many of the dishes featured are from the new Melissa’s Hatch Pepper Cookbook.

This year’s Hatch Chile Roast allows patrons to pick-up on the spot freshly-roasted Melissa’s Hatch Chiles by the case and by the preferred level of spice from mild to hot. Pre-ordering is advised.

Chef Marco takes a break from his busy kitchen to provide all the savory Hatch roasting details.

Show 486, August 6, 2022: Chef Marco Zapien, Hatch Pepper Tailgate Celebration at Zapien’s Salsa Grill

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and Taqueria

Every year Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Taqueria in Pico Rivera goes all out to celebrate the short Hatch Pepper season. First up for the festivities is Chef Marco’s Hatch Pepper Tailgate Celebration on the evening of Wednesday, August 17th. It’s an entertaining and interactive cooking demo and Dinner featuring the dishes prepared in the cooking demonstration. The recipes are from the new Melissa’s Hatch Pepper Cookbook. Chef Marco is our guest serving all the spicy specifics.

The Drink of the Day is a Hatch Pepper and Pink Pineapple Agua FrescaRITA. The Dinner Menu includes Hatch Barbecue Pulled Pork Sliders, Hatch Pozole Tostada, Hatch Tacos de Papas, Hatch Pepper Big Game Chili, Hatch Coctel de Camaron, Melissa’s Costa Azul Glazed Chicken Wings and, for Dessert, Hatch Pepper and Cream Cheese Crepes with Rum Caramel Sauce.

The evening is $80 per guest and reservations are needed.

Show 440, August 28, 2021: Chef / Proprietor Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill, Hatch Chile Festivities Part One

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and Taqueria

“Hatch Chile Pepper season is here and Zapien’s Salsa Grill is ready to turn on the roasters and get creative with the bright green, glossy pepper’s limited annual availability”.

“For the eleventh year, the restaurant and Chef / Proprietor Marco Zapien are making a late Summer celebration of the unique Hatch Chile, hosting both a Hatch Chile Roast and Hatch Chile Cooking Demo.”

“This year’s Hatch Chile Roast on Saturday, Sept. 4 from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. will be back to its normal format with the roasters directly outside the restaurant along with other unique Hatch Chile items available for sale.” While the roasting is going on the restaurant will feature Hatch Chile menu specials for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. Think Hatch Enchiladas Suizes with creamy Hatch-salsa verde for starters.

“The 2021 roast will be bigger than ever with more roasters running to eliminate wait-times.”

“It’s strongly suggested that cases are reserved in advance. You can select the level of spice – from mild to very hot. Each case is $45 and includes 25 pounds of Hatch Chiles.”

“Chef Marco Zapien’s Hatch Chile cooking demonstration is Wednesday, September 8th at 6 p.m. Participants will learn how to make several Hatch Chile recipes.” The menu, now available, will include highlights of Chef MZ’s creativity such as Hatch Pozole Tostada, Hatch Pepper Braised Short Ribs and Spiced Chocolate – Banana Cream Pie Chimichanga for a properly decadent dessert. All guests will receive a copy of the all-new Melissa’s Hatch Pepper Cookbook which Chef Marco contributed to supporting the culinary efforts of Melissa’s Sharon Hernandez (Co-Founder,) Chef Ida Rodriguez and Chef Tom Fraker.

“Recipes for more than seven different Hatch Chile dishes, including dessert, will be demonstrated and then served for all to enjoy. Class goers will take home recipes and step-by-step directions.”

“And what would a Chef Marco cooking demo be without a raffle? Prizes will range from official Salsa Grill swag to other crave-worthy Melissa’s Produce Hatch Chile signature products.”

Chef Marco Zapien continues as our guest with freshly roasted Hatch Chiles in hand.

Show 440, August 28, 2021: Chef / Proprietor Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill, Hatch Chile Festivities Part Two

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and Taqueria

“Hatch Chile Pepper season is here and Zapien’s Salsa Grill is ready to turn on the roasters and get creative with the bright green, glossy pepper’s limited annual availability”.

“For the eleventh year, the restaurant and Chef / Proprietor Marco Zapien are making a late Summer celebration of the unique Hatch Chile, hosting both a Hatch Chile Roast and Hatch Chile Cooking Demo.”

“This year’s Hatch Chile Roast on Saturday, Sept. 4 from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. will be back to its normal format with the roasters directly outside the restaurant along with other unique Hatch Chile items available for sale.” While the roasting is going on the restaurant will feature Hatch Chile menu specials for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. Think Hatch Enchiladas Suizes with creamy Hatch-salsa verde for starters.

“The 2021 roast will be bigger than ever with more roasters running to eliminate wait-times.”

“It’s strongly suggested that cases are reserved in advance. You can select the level of spice – from mild to very hot. Each case is $45 and includes 25 pounds of Hatch Chiles.”

“Chef Marco Zapien’s Hatch Chile cooking demonstration is Wednesday, September 8th at 6 p.m. Participants will learn how to make several Hatch Chile recipes.” The menu, now available, will include highlights of Chef MZ’s creativity such as Hatch Pozole Tostada, Hatch Pepper Braised Short Ribs and Spiced Chocolate – Banana Cream Pie Chimichanga for a properly decadent dessert. All guests will receive a copy of the all-new Melissa’s Hatch Pepper Cookbook which Chef Marco contributed to supporting the culinary efforts of Melissa’s Sharon Hernandez (Co-Founder,) Chef Ida Rodriguez and Chef Tom Fraker.

“Recipes for more than seven different Hatch Chile dishes, including dessert, will be demonstrated and then served for all to enjoy. Class goers will take home recipes and step-by-step directions.”

“And what would a Chef Marco cooking demo be without a raffle? Prizes will range from official Salsa Grill swag to other crave-worthy Melissa’s Produce Hatch Chile signature products.”

Chef Marco Zapien continues as our guest with freshly roasted Hatch Chiles in hand.

Show 412, February 13, 2021: Chef & Proprietor Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Taqueria, Pico Rivera Part One

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and Taqueria

Chef Marco Zapien’s Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Taqueria in Pico Rivera has reopened for sidewalk dining Tuesday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Family meals are still available To-Go. For Sunday (Valentine’s Day) from 4 to 8:00 p.m. Chef Marco has created a 3- course menu with options for each course either for al fresco dining or curbside pickup. Think Rosemary Roasted Prime Rib of Beef.

Chef Marco also has a special Lent menu with traditional Lenten dishes as well as his own original, Lent creations. It’s available starting on Ash Wednesday, February 17th. Think Mojarra Frita with pan-fried whole tilapia topped with roasted garlic butter and served with rice and frijoles de la olla.

After chefing in the sports and entertainment industry for years, Chef Marco Zapien decided in 2003 that it was time to build a reputation in the private sector by partnering with his Father, Jess, in a family operated restaurant. Zapien’s Salsa Grill & Taqueria has been the culinary heart of the Pico Rivera community for 18 years now and has developed into a community favorite for preparing authentic regional Mexican fare. They even make the effort to prepare their own tortillas fresh daily.

Marco has developed a signature style of cooking that incorporates two generations of his Mother’s and Father’s family recipes with a dash of his own passionate creativity.

We entice Chef Marco out of his busy kitchen for a chat.

Show 412, February 13, 2021: Chef & Proprietor Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Taqueria, Pico Rivera Part Two

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and Taqueria

Chef Marco Zapien’s Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Taqueria in Pico Rivera has reopened for sidewalk dining Tuesday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Family meals are still available To-Go. For Sunday (Valentine’s Day) from 4 to 8:00 p.m. Chef Marco has created a 3- course menu with options for each course either for al fresco dining or curbside pickup. Think Rosemary Roasted Prime Rib of Beef.

Chef Marco also has a special Lent menu with traditional Lenten dishes as well as his own Lent creations. It’s available starting on Ash Wednesday, February 17th. Think Mojarra Frita with pan-fried whole tilapia topped with roasted garlic butter and served with rice and frijoles de la olla.

After chefing in the sports and entertainment industry for years, Chef Marco Zapien decided in 2003 that it was time to build a reputation in the private sector by partnering with his Father, Jess, in a family operated restaurant. Zapien’s Salsa Grill & Taqueria has been the culinary heart of the Pico Rivera community for 18 years now and has developed into a community favorite for preparing authentic regional Mexican fare.

They even make their own tortillas fresh daily.

Marco has developed a signature style of cooking that incorporates two generations of his Mother’s and Father’s family recipes with a dash of his own passionate creativity.

Now that we have Chef Marco taking a break from his busy kitchen he stays with us for more inspired food conversation.

Show 387, August 22, 2020: Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Taqueria, Pico Rivera

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and Taqueria“Hatch Chile season is here, and Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Taqueria in Pico Rivera is ready with a pair of events where guests can safely enjoy the annual availability of this unique bright green and incredibly flavorful pepper.”

“Adapting to the current COVID-19 pandemic, Chef Marco Zapien and team created a way for the tenth straight year of Hatch Chile Festivities to take place. This year’s Hatch Chile cooking demonstration will be in a virtual setting, and the Hatch Chile roast will allow guests to enter a drive-thru line for pick-up.”

“The cooking demo will take place Wednesday, August 26 from 6 -7 p.m. via Zoom. Participants will be taken through a three-course Hatch Chile inspired menu and the format will still allow for the same interaction as in-restaurant demos in the past. Pre-registration is required and anyone who signs up for the premium package with all ingredients prepped and boxed, or the virtual log in access, will also receive a $25 Salsa Grill gift card.”

“This year’s Hatch Chile Roast is set for Saturday, August 29 from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Patrons must pre-order their 25-pound cases of Melissa’s Hatch Chiles, and can select their preferred level of spice from mild to very hot. Patrons can arrive anytime between 9 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and enter the drive thru.”

“Every summer, New Mexico Hatch Chiles are ripe enough to enjoy for their short season and Chef Marco makes a late summer celebration of it. In the past, The Salsa Grill has served more Hatch Chile dishes than any other restaurant outside the Southwest region this time of year.”

“Outdoor patio dining is permitted at The Salsa Grill and Chef Marco will be featuring Hatch Chile specials on the menu on the day of the roast.”

Show 371, May 2, 2020: Executive Chef & Co-Proprietor Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and Taqueria“Like all restaurants in LA County, Zapien’s Salsa Grill in Pico Rivera is limited to takeout and curbside pick-up options to share its regional Mexican Cuisine with the community. With dine-in service unavailable, Chef Marco Zapien and team are keeping it fun and giving back to the community, while offering some of their classic favorites available for takeout, curbside pick-up and delivery.”

“The most popular special so far is a family meal pack that feeds 4-6 and includes a salad, choice of entrée (Chile Verde, Chile Colorado, Chicharron, Carnitas or Chicken Fajitas), rice, beans, chips, salsa, Tortillas and soft drinks. Plus, anyone who orders this takeout/pick-up special will get 2 pounds of uncooked rice and beans and two rolls of toilet paper, all for only $39.99.”

“Chef Zapien’s creative giving doesn’t stop there. He’s helping out families with kids with $3 individual kids’ pizzas with the purchase of any entrée. Even more, all entrees come with a free soft drink or coffee.”

“Recently, Chef Zapien introduced the Corona Survival Kit, including two frozen packs of menudo or pozole, a six pack of beer of choice, two mini (Agave Tequila) shot bottles, one 2-pound bag of uncooked beans, one 2-pound bag of uncooked rice and two rolls of toilet paper.”

For over 25 years, The Salsa Grill has been a favorite spot in the Pico Rivera community and beyond and wants to give back. “We want to give back to the community that’s been supporting us for almost 26 years,” said co-owner and Executive Chef, Zapien.

We gently pull Chef Marco out of his busy kitchen to talk about all his specials for Cinco de Mayo (Family Meal Packs) and Mother’s Day (including a Mother’s Day Brunch feast for 4 to 6 people).

Show 338, August 24, 2019: Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and TaqueriaOnce a year Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill in Pico Rivera hosts a series of Hatch Chile-themed events to celebrate the famous New Mexican spicy and savory pepper. First up is Chef Marco’s Hatch pepper Cooking Demonstration on Tuesday evening, August 27th from 6 to 8:00 p.m. Guests will receive copies of all the Hatch-themed recipes including Drink of the Day, Appetizers, Salad, Entrees and Dessert. The seated Dinner features all the items demonstrated by Chef Marco. Guests also receive a gift certificate for a complimentary meal at Zapien’s Salsa Grill on a future visit.

Zapien’s will then host a daytime Hatch Chile Roast on September 7th were supplies of the roasted Hatch Chiles can be picked up by the case. The guest selects the level of spicy desired ranging from mild to hot. Also on Saturday, September 7th from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. join Chef Marco and Zapien’s Salsa Grill for their special Hatch Chile Brunch featuring over ten incredible Hatch Chile inspired dishes.

We’ll entice Chef Marco away from the chile roaster for a chat.

Show 288, September 1, 2018: Chef Marco Zapien, Zapien’s Salsa Grill and Taqueria

Marco Zapien of Zapiens Salsa Grill and TaqueriaOnce a year Chef Marco Zapien of Zapien’s Salsa Grill in Pico Rivera hosts a series of Hatch Chile-themed events to celebrate the famous New Mexican spicy and savory pepper. Zapien’s will orchestrate a daytime Hatch Chile Roast on September 8th where supplies of the roasted Hatch Chiles can be picked up by the case. The guest selects the level of spicy desired ranging from mild to hot. A good tip is to reserve your case in advance.

Also on Saturday, September 8th from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. join Chef Marco and Zapien’s Salsa Grill for their special Hatch Chile Brunch featuring over ten Hatch Chile inspired dishes. Enjoy all-you-can-eat, and hand-made Tortillas, Champagne and Mimosas for a modest $24 per guest. Think Hatch “Macadillo” with macaroni baked in a spiced cheese sauce with Hatch Chile picadillo.

We’ll entice Chef Marco away from the rotating chile roaster for a flavorful chat.