Pappy McGregor’s owners to open Mexican restaurant in Paso Robles

jlynem@thetribunenews.comFebruary 19, 2014 

A new restaurant specializing in California Mexican cuisine is coming to downtown Paso Robles.

Donovan Schmit and Troy Larkin, owners of Pappy McGregor’s Bar & Grill in San Luis Obispo and Paso Robles, are opening Fish Gaucho. The restaurant is set to open May 1, just in time for Cinco de Mayo festivities, Schmit said.

“We’re focusing on fresh fish and fresh vegetables,” he said. “It’s what you’d find in Cabo or in San Diego … healthy Mexican food with an emphasis on seafood. There will also be a tequila bar.”

Schmit said that the Irish pubs are doing well, but that he and Larkin were passionate about opening a restaurant celebrating Mexican food in a healthy way. They also saw a need for another restaurant in Paso Robles that was a departure from the traditional Mexican fare.

The two, who enjoy cooking that type of food at home, are bringing chef Chris Beckett up from Pappy McGregor’s in San Luis Obispo so that he can run the new restaurant. They plan to hire about 25 employees.

“It’s something we’ve always wanted to do,” he said. “We’re doing this instead of opening another pub in the Arroyo Grande or Pismo Beach area.”

The restaurant will be located at 13th and Park streets in the space formerly occupied by Rendition furniture store. Schmit declined to disclose how much is being invested in establishing the new restaurant, including tenant improvements.

“It’s never been a restaurant before, so a full commercial kitchen is being built, including the bar area,” he said.

When it opens, the 3,500-square-foot space will feature handmade furniture, decorations and cabinetry from Guadalajara, Mexico.

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