Salsa Grill Participates at East LA Meets Napa

Zapien’s Salsa Grill is participating, for the fifth straight year, at East LA Meets Napa Friday, July 28 at Salsa Grill Participates at East LA Meets NapaLA Live.

The event gathers 80 of Los Angeles’ top restaurants and premium vintners, including The Salsa Grill.

Chef Marco Zapien and his team will delight guests with their Posole Tostada – all the elements of posole on a tostada. The dish includes shredded pork, hominy, lime juice, pickled onion, cilantro and radishes served on a crisp tostada shell.

The food and wine festival also features live entertainment, including OZOMATLI and Poncho Sanchez, and a celebrity lounge.

Proceeds from the event help uninsured patients get primary health care. AltaMed is the event organizer.

Click here to purchase tickets. 


Salsa Grill hosts all-day fundraiser for Football for Life

The Salsa Grill is hosting an all-day fundraiser for Football for Life, a non-profit organization that promotes suicide prevention through the game of football, on Saturday, July 8.

Salsa Grill to Host Football for Life Fundraiser

Co-owner and head chef, Marco Zapien is generously allowing the organization to fundraise from open to close, 7 a.m. – 9 p.m.  

This fundraiser coincides with a current GoFundMe campaign organized by Football for Life, which seeks funds to help teens living on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. According to Joe Pina, a volunteer at the reservation, 2015 was declared a state of emergency on the reservation due to a rash of teen suicides.

On Pine Ridge, 97% of the population lives far below the U.S. federal poverty line, and the high school dropout rate is 70%. The unemployment rate is upwards of 90% due to the lack of industry, technology or commercial infrastructure on the reservation.  

Football for Life looks to take the life lessons learned on the football field to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation

The Football for Life group is comprised of former coaches and players who believe the game of football was instrumental to the success they have achieved in life. The founders and directors of Football for Life know from personal experience the vital impact of youth sports participation. Specifically, participation in football can provide the tools to successfully transition to adulthood.

Salsa Grill patrons and football for Life supporters should mention the fundraiser to their server and a portion of that bill will be donated to the organization on that day. No flyer is required.

Chef MZ is an avid supporter of many non-profits, including sports organizations and schools in the Pico Rivera community, and the support for the reservation in another state shows his overall commitment to helping others.

Click here to view The Salsa Grill’s menu. 

Salsa Grill Makes LA Times Top 5 Chile Verde List

Zapien’s Salsa Grill & Taqueria made the Los Angeles Times’ top 5 list for the best Chile Verde in Los Angeles. The list came out online on Thursday, May 25. Salsa Grill Makes LA's Top 5 Places for Chile Verde

The article noted the different ways The Salsa Grill and Chef MZ serve their tender, braised pork in chile verde, including their most well known dish, Dionico Morales’ Favorite. The dish is available as part of the Traditional Dishes dinner menu – a tribute to a great man and regular – and includes choice of Chile Verde or Chile Colorado, beef in red sauce.

The restaurant also has a Chile Verde Burrito available all day and a lunch special featuring the signature item. “The Mayor” merges another Salsa Grill favorite, red enchiladas, and Chile Verde. It’s named after a local council member. Click here to view The Salsa Grill’s menu. 

All Traditional Dishes are served with fresh, handmade Tortillas. Lunch specials and Traditional Dishes are served with beans and rice.  

Click here to view the full article. 

Get over to the Salsa Grill and enjoy some delicious Chile Verde. 

Salsa Grill Hosts Annual Mother’s Day Essay Contest

This year’s Mother’s Day essay writing contest hosted by The Salsa Grill invites students to share why their mom is the best. Salsa Grill Mother's Day Essay Contest

Beginning now and continuing through Sunday, May 8, The Salsa Grill is asking writers ages 7 through 13 to submit an essay up to 250 words answering the question: “Why is your mom the best?” The younger participants are encouraged to include an illustration with their essay.

The grand prize winner of The Salsa Grill’s 5th-Annual Mother’s Day essay writing contest will receive a Massage Envy gift card to give their mom on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 17.

In addition, The Salsa Grill will provide the winners with a restaurant gift card and special treat bag for mom.

Winners in two age categories – ages 7 through 10 and 11 through 13 – will be announced on Wednesday, May 13, with enough time to coordinate pick up ahead of the holiday.

With its focus on education, the Salsa Grill’s Mother’s Day essay writing contest is a recipe for success. The Salsa Grill partners with local private and public schools all year to involve students in other programs and events, including The El Rancho High School Mentor/Mentee program, where Chef Marco Zapien speaks semi-annually to aspiring chefs.

The goal of the essay contest is to involve the local youth and help them forge a path to success.

Good luck to all the participants! Click here for more info. 

Salsa Grill Hosts Annual Toy Drive

Zapien’s Salsa Grill & Taqueria will be bringing joy to those in need this holiday season.  The restaurant is currently running its sixth annual gift drive. Salsa Grill Hosts Annual Toy Drive

Running through Thursday, Dec. 22, all unwrapped toys donated will be delivered to Saint Hilary Church in Pico Rivera to less fortunate families, with teens and children, just in time for Christmas.

The Salsa Grill is offering adults 50 percent off their meal (per item, per person) and children (12 and under) will eat free with any unwrapped, new toy. A win-win situation.

Chef and owner Marco Zapien works closely with the church by giving his time all year long by donating, providing food, and catering to those in need.  This holiday season is no different as Chef Zapien will provide his own bundle of gifts and toys to donate to be shipped off to the church.

Last year the amount of gifts collected was just shy of 200.  The restaurant is hoping to exceed that this year.

Get into the holiday spirit and donate a gift to a family in need.

Salsa Grill’s Marco Zapien On-Air with SoCal Restaurant Show

Zapien’s Salsa Grill & Taqueria executive chef and co-owner, Marco Zapien will be an on-air guest on the SoCal Restaurant Show with Andrew Harris Saturday, Nov. 26. Salsa Grill's Marco Zapien On-Air with SoCal Restaurant Show

Zapien will be live at 10:30 a.m. talking about the restaurant, its history, and the restaurant’s recent makeover.

The Salsa Grill was closed for almost two weeks in October and conducted a complete makeover to give guests a better dinning experience.

The SoCal Restaurant Show airs every Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon on AM 830 Angels Radio. Remember to tune in just before 11 a.m. to listen to Chef MZ.

Salsa Grill to Celebrate Complete Makeover

After closing for almost two weeks for renovations, The Salsa Grill quickly made its way back into the rhythm of serving the finest Mexican cuisine, hand made Tortillas, table side Guacamole and amazing Micheladas. Salsa Grill to Celebrate Complete Makeover

Although the restaurant is back into the swing of things, there’s still plenty of time to celebrate. Executive Chef Marco Zapien and staff will celebrate their complete makeover with everyone on Saturday, Nov. 5 from open to close with some special fun.

The festivities will include all day Happy Hour, random raffles throughout the day for gift cards and special prizes and live music.

Upgrades to the restaurant include new floors and base boards, a complete bathroom remodel, fresh paint, upgraded ceiling fans and new restaurant furniture.

For almost 23 years The Salsa Grill has been serving the finest Mexican cuisine to the Pico Rivera community and beyond. Chef Zapien and family run the restaurant, known for dishes like Mole Enchiladas, Pozole, Menudo, Chile Verde and Chile Colorado. Some of the recipes were passed down by Zapien’s grandmother.

Join The Salsa Grill Saturday for some fun, and enjoy the remodel. The Salsa Grill is open Saturday, Nov. 5 from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Cal High to Name Kitchen After Chef Marco Zapien

On Wednesday, Sept. 28 at 9 a.m. the California High School Culinary Arts Academy will name one of their program “kitchens” after Chef Marco Zapien during a special ceremony at the school.Cal High to Name Kitchen After Chef Marco Zapien

Chef Marco, owner and executive chef at Zapien’s Salsa Grill & Taqueria in Pico Rivera, has been an active volunteer and donor to the program for over five years. Twice a year he attends a culinary career day where he brings enough samples of the items he demonstrates for the entire program to try. Additionally, Marco has been a guest speaker at other student career related events and regularly donates supplies.

Cal High’s Culinary Arts Academy divides students into smaller individual groups or “kitchens” for more hands on experience and an interactive learning environment. A few other famous chefs which these kitchens are named after include, Julia Childs, Duff Goldman and Bobby Flay. Soon Marco Zapien will be added to the list.

“We appreciate all the dedication and support Chef Marco has shown the Culinary Arts Academy at Cal High over the years,” said lead academy teacher, Corey Duarte. “Chef Marco has also shown the importance of family by bringing them into help with demos and talking about the restaurant.”

Zapien’s Salsa Grill & Taqueria, also known as The Salsa Grill is a family business. Chef Marco runs the establishment with the help of his dad, Jess Zapien and several family members play a key role in the day-to-day operations. Chef Marco also founded Black Tie & Blue Jeans Catering, which offers several menu options for weddings and other special events.

Hatch Chile Festivities at The Salsa Grill

Hatch Chile season is here and The Salsa Grill is ready with three events surely to take advantage of the bright green, glossy pepper’s annual availability.

Hatch Chile Festivities at The Salsa Grill
For the sixth straight year, Chef Marco Zapien is hosting a Hatch Chile interactive cooking demonstration, Hatch Chile roast and Hatch Chile brunch. Every summer, New Mexican Hatch Chiles are ripe enough to enjoy and Chef MZ is making a late summer celebration out of it.

The cooking demo on Wednesday, Sept. 7 from 6 -8 p.m. is where participants will learn how to make items such as Kool Cabbage and Seafood Salad Tacos topped with Hatch Chile Sauce, Hatch Chile Marinated Chicken, Hatch Chile Baby Back Ribs and much more. Recipes for 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. The cost is $45 per person, click here to view menu, and here to reserve your spot.

This year’s Hatch cooking demo will give class attendees a taste of what the Hatch Chile roast is all about; Chef MZ will do a live roast at the cooking demo. And what would a cooking demo be without a raffle – the raffle prizes are cases of roasted Hatch Chiles.

The parking lot in front of the restaurant will be filled with roasters and cases of chiles on Saturday, Sept. 17 beginning at 8 a.m. The Salsa Grill has worked closely with Melissa’s Produce to ensure the most flavorful peppers for the roast, cooking demo and brunch. Reserve your cases of Hatch Chiles here.

Chef MZ’s Hatch Chile brunch is also on Saturday, Sept. 17 from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., and includes a complete Hatch Chile inspired menu. Some decadent brunch items include Hatch Chile Picadillo, Hatch Chile Mac N Chees and Tacos de papa con Hatch Chile. The cost is $21 per person and $10 for children 12 and under. Each adult brunch includes Champagne and Mimosas.

Hatch Chile lovers can pre-order their $40 case and select their preferred level of hotness: mild, medium, hot, or very hot. Class participants should also sign-up before it’s full. Interested participants can register here or can call the restaurant at 562-942.7072.

Chef MZ Ready to Spice Up East LA Meets Napa

For the fifth straight year, Chef Marco Zapien will showcase his culinary talent to Angelenos during the 2016 East LA Meets Napa “World Tour.” Chef MZ Ready to Spice Up East LA Meets Napa

On Friday, July 15 beginning at 6 p.m., foodies will enjoy the tastes of culinary greats, including Zapien’s Chicharron Verde Tostada served with pickled, red onion slaw and topped with queso fresco.

Other restaurants and wineries – primarily Los Angeles’ top Mexican eateries and Latino-owned or operated Napa area wineries – will sample bites and sips at the event’s new venue, the California Plaza.

The event serves as a fundraiser for AltaMed Heatlh Services, and for $225 guests will enjoy all-you-can eat and drink, and some live entertainment.

Wine tasting will extend beyond Napa. This year’s theme, “World Tour,” means wine varietals from many international wine regions will be showcased by vinters.

The California Plaza is located at 350 S. Grand Avenue in Downtown LA. Since 2007 this annual fundraiser had been held at Union Station, but after growing to almost 2,000 partygoers, a larger venue was in store.

For more event information, please visit