I am Founder and Director of Tuckeria Fresh Mexican Restaurant in Fortitude Valley in Brisbane.
Probably this one (Tuckeria). The whole concept of Tuckeria Fresh Mexican started as a random, crazy idea that I had in 2004 while sitting in San Diego in a taqueria (taco store) while on holiday. I didn’t develop the idea much further for many years, but a few years later while living in San Francisco, California, the idea started to grow on me that a California-style Mexican taqueria may actually be a really interesting thing to launch in my hometown of Brisbane.
Starting in 2008, over the course of 18 months, I travelled widely throughout Mexico and California to refine my recipes and to gain ideas. I tested my recipes on my friends. I developed menus, business plans and concepts. I visited more taquerias and tried more Mexican meals than you can imagine! I took lots of cooking classes. Eventually the idea of opening a taqueria in Brisbane, similar to the ones that I enjoyed while living in California, was so vivid in my mind that I convinced myself that I should quit my US finance job and move back home to Brisbane and turn my ideas into reality.
It has been tremendously rewarding putting my ideas for Tuckeria into reality over the past 12 months, and there are still many more to come! Seeing customers enjoy the Mexican food we serve, meeting new people everyday, and working with all the members of the Tuckeria Team is a lot of fun for me. In general, restaurant work is tiring but good fun!
My parents. Successful entrepreneurs in their own right, but most importantly good people. They always taught me that anything I wanted to do was achievable, and they were right.
Seeing as I go to work these days in jeans and skate shoes, it might be hard for people to imagine that I was once a commercial real estate financier, both here in Brisbane and in the US, going to work each day in a suit, tie and pair of black dress shoes!
I have a great affection for the mural artists of San Francisco’s Mission District. I love the way the muralists capture in their art the rebellious and vibrant spirit of the Mission District, while addressing serious issues in modern American and Latin American society.
San Francisco, California. It was my happy home for a couple of years and I still consider it my second home today. I try to come back as much as I can. In fact, I am writing these answers from San Francisco right now. I am over here getting some more ideas for Tuckeria and visiting friends. I love the city’s party atmosphere, the liberal views of its people, the easygoing lifestyle, and the beautiful San Francisco Bay Area, which I consider has the most beautiful landscapes of any place in the world. More than anything, I love the people of San Francisco. I have so many friends here in San Francisco and have always felt very extremely welcome and at home.
Carnitas (pork) tacos with hot pico de gallo salsa, sour cream, onions and cilantro, with lots of salsa picante, washed down with a Pacifico (Mexican beer).
Faster airplanes. I love travelling overseas but long haul plane travel becomes tiresome.
I was a university student at Queensland University of Technology (QUT). I graduated in 2003 with a Bachelor of Business majoring in Financial Economics. I was also a keen Australian Football and waterpolo player. My interest in finance has waned somewhat, but my interest in football and waterpolo haven’t!
I am excited about the increased connectivity in everyday life through social media, and how this may lead to some exciting entrepreneurial opportunities. I also like the idea that technology advancements will allow people to work remotely more often. The idea of working everyday from wherever I choose in the world, and being able to tap into information via ‘the cloud’ is extremely appealing to me.
To find out where you can try one of Tuckeria’s tasty treats visit tuckeria.com.au
Author: Christine Bridge