FUN MEXICAN FOOD AT TAQUERIA PICARO
It’s been a long and winding road for Jeven Showers, owner of Taqueria Picaro at 76 N. Pioneer Street in downtown Ashland, as he got his start in the food industry fairly early.
“I started my journey into the restaurant business in my mom’s kitchen growing up,” he said. “She is a great cook (love you, Mom!). I got a job as a dishwasher in Mt. Shasta back in the 90s and never looked back. I grew up in the Napa Valley and moved to Southern Oregon in my late 20s. I was only planning on staying here a few years but fell in love with the area. The region has so much to offer with all its beauty and nature. I enjoy fishing, hiking, ALL things Star Wars, rock hounding, sobriety, the Oregon Coast and hanging out with my wife, Nica.”
Jeven keeps himself busy with a few other businesses as well. Garth Evey is his business partner at The Pump House Burgers and Brews in Talent and The Silver Cypress Resort in Gold Beach, which is a vacation resort with refurbished vintage airstream trailers overlooking the ocean.
“My first job in Ashland was at the Kat Wok, and what a fun, crazy place that was,” Jeven said. “I taught cooking classes at Allyson’s of Ashland, cooked at Alex’s, Chateaulin and a few other places locally, before landing at Tabu, which I ended up purchasing from Pat South, the previous owner. I closed it to open Taqueria Picaro in 2015.”
The business model at Taqueria Picaro was something entirely different from Tabu.
“After spending many years running the kitchens of various establishments, I decided to shift my role as head chef to owner/operator in order to pursue other business ventures and hobbies,” he said. “Along with a handful of friends, we joined forces to remodel and rebrand Tabu into a friendly, casual, local eatery for all to enjoy. Plus, we all love tacos, hence Taqueria Picaro was born! We offer an amazing selection of homemade Mexican food, from handmade tortillas to slow cooked meats to fresh tamales and burritos. Whether you are a carnivore or a vegetarian, we have offerings to satisfy all. The cantina provides a variety of great Mexican beers, craft cocktails and, of course, some great margaritas from our talented bartenders.”
Taqueria Picaro’s kitchen is run by Banesa Rodas, who has been with Jeven since Day One.
“Banesa brings her authentic family recipes and talent to the Taqueria, providing our customers with amazing eats,” Jeven said. “Ashley Steffen keeps the front of the house running smoothly with smiley faces, and Tonie Stewart rocks the Cantina. I am extremely grateful for my amazing staff that keeps the Taqueria operating. A BIG thanks to all of our supportive and awesome customers!”
The Taqueria is open Monday-Saturday, 11:00-9:00 (closed Sundays). Join them on “Taco Tuesdays” or Happy Hour from 3:00-5:00pm Monday through Friday for great food and drink specials.
For more information or to order take-out, the phone number is 541-708-6565. You can also see them on Facebook and Instagram.