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"This is part of his growth as a young chef and I support him," says Lerner. "It's amazing to me that he's not even 25 years old yet. He has long, amazing career ahead of him. He came in when we were one year old, and it's been great to grow together."
Lerner has feelers out for a replacement, and Zaragoza says he'll help with the transition. "We're looking to continue to focus on the street-food aspect—delicious tacos and tortas," says Lerner. "Guadalajara and Mexico City food that is honest and not fussy."
As far as the bar program goes, Kessler moved on a while ago. In April, Lerner brought Brian Adee up from New Orleans. Adee has since boosted the spirits list—particularly with regard to mezcal—and totally revamped the cocktail menu, introducing some very intriguing potions, like a negroni built on mezcal and Madeira, and a piña colada with tequila, mezcal, and pisco.
You still have time to sip on those while eating Zaragoza's food though—his last service is September 15.