Burbank’s Tequilas Cantina & Grill will celebrate its 10th year in business on Wednesday, March 16th, and have a $10 Food & Drink menu from 11:30 am to 9:00 pm. In honor of their 10 year anniversary, Tequilas has been completely remodeled. Owners, Carlos, and Patricia Rivera purchased Tequilas 10 years ago with just seven employees. Five of those employees are still working at the restaurant today in what they call the “Tequila Familia.”
The remodel consists of new booths and tables in the restaurant and bar, electrical sockets with available cell phone charging, and free WiFi. The outdoor patio has heaters, air conditioning, and several large TVs too. The patio is the perfect spot for reserved parties, meetings, and larger events. A major extension of the remodel is their new decor including hand-painted murals and portraits in all rooms including the restrooms.
The Rivera’s wanted to update the look of their establishment to reflect the City of Burbank and inspirational Mexican icons and culture. There are nine murals and four canvas portraits throughout the restaurant, each of which was designed with a specific message conveyed in a light-hearted manner.
The Rivera’s are delighted the remodel is complete and found that the biggest challenge of the remodel was finding an artist/muralist that was the right fit. They were very specific and clear in their vision of the elements in the murals. “We needed an artist that could transform our vision to our walls as well as exceed our imagination. After many interviews, we met the perfect artist, Ezra,” said Carlos. Not only did the Rivera’s find an artist that could transform their vision, but he also enhanced the murals with his artistic vision.
Artist, Israel Cervantes, known as Ezra_One on social media is an accomplished street artist and graphic designer. He is widely recognized as one of the art world’s most creative talents. Cervantes is a graduate of the Art Institute of California with a Bachelor of Science degree in Media Arts and Animation. His unique style of Surrealism, complimented with graphic elements of shapes and color, has landed him in the pages of The Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly, and Juxtapoze magazine.
Cervantes has worked on projects throughout the United States including a number of community-based projects in New York and Los Angeles. He has also been instrumental in non-profit campaigns, heading and instructing mural design for various programs. In addition to his community work, Cervantes’ cutting-edge brand of street art marketing has been commissioned by a number of Fortune 500 front-runners.
His art depicts the people and culture of LA’s diverse community through vibrant and bold colors. “I believe as I continue to develop artistically, my style will continue to evolve. What will not change, is my love for art,” said Cervantes. “What can I say, I’m an Aersol-Holic and Paint Manipulator.”
The remodel has been a labor of love for both the Rivera’s and artist Israel Cervantes. “It is our hope that the business will grow due to the remodel. We hope we created a comfortable dining space for all to enjoy,” adds Carlos. Throughout the years, they have made minor improvements to the restaurant, which has been around for over 5o years. It has been a dream of theirs to have a major remodel of this scale and the pandemic prompted the remodel to begin.
The pandemic impacted their business just as it has affected other restaurants. Since the world was changing, they had to think of a new way to not only save the business but to make it flourish. Additionally, they wanted to ensure that their customers feel comfortable inside the restaurant. They want the customers to sit in an atmosphere that is inviting, lively, and conversation-provoking. “Burbank has been good to us. We have met many customers that we consider our close friends. This is one of the ways we can express our gratitude,” adds Patricia.
The community is welcome to the 10 Year Anniversary celebration on Wednesday, March 16th from 11:30 to 9:00 PM. Check out the remodeled Tequilas Cantina at 4310 W Magnolia Blvd. Dine inside, have a toast with Frida, hangout out with Olmos, Selena, Santana, and Jenni Rivera. Or you can choose to sit on the patio and enjoy the Burbank sign.
Below are some of the highlighted murals:
Frida Kahlo: The main dining room has been transformed with a portrait of the world-renowned artist, Frida Kahlo. Frida lived in chronic pain for most of her life. It is documented that Frida was diagnosed with polio at the age of six. Additionally, Frida was in a bus accident which resulted in many fractured bones. It is said that she had a tumultuous relationship with Artist Diego Rivera. Her art often expressed the physical and emotional anguish she experienced. Despite Frida’s challenges, she was a strong thought-provoking woman that did not view herself as a victim of her circumstances. She was ahead of her time as demonstrated by the way she lived and the manner in which she viewed life as depicted in her art. It’s said, she enjoyed tequila shots to ease her pain. The quote from Kahlo, “Doctor, if you let me have this shot of Tequila, I promise not to drink at my funeral.” This quote was the inspiration behind the mural.
Cueva De Las Estrellas/Cave of the Stars: In our small cave-shaped room in the back of the main dining room, a mural of iconic singers and actors is displayed. Since Burbank is known to be the “media capital of the world”, the Rivera’s decided an artist theme would reflect the essence of Burbank’s reputation of being home to more than 1000 media entertainment companies.
Portraits found in the Cave of Stars
Jenni Rivera: Rivera was a famous singer known as “La Gran Senora”. She was a songstress, reality-TV star, producer, philanthropist, businesswoman, and activist. She was also a spokeswoman for the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence and used her fame as a platform to impact the lives of others. She often shared her personal story regarding Domestic Violence. She provided much hope and strength to many. Sadly, she died in a tragic plane crash in 2012.
Selena: Selena was a famous songstress known as the “Queen of Tejano Music”. Her contributions to music and fashion made her one of the most celebrated Mexican American entertainers. She was a producer and fashion designer and the first major performer to record in Spanish and English. Unfortunately, Selena was murdered at the young age of twenty-three by the president of her fan club but made an immense impact on the world in her short-lived life.
Carlos Santa: Santana is a famous global guitarist whose unique style of infusing rock ‘n’ roll with Latin American jazz, Afro beats and blues made him famous worldwide. In 1988 Santana and his family created the Milagro Foundation. Its purpose is to help vulnerable and underserved children in the arts, education, and health. His commitment and passion is based on the belief that “We Can Change the World.” Santa uses his music as a powerful spiritual tool and received numerous prestigious awards for his music throughout his career. Some awards include Billboard, Medallions of Excellence, and Grammys. He continues to perform worldwide and to receive accolades.
Edward James Olmos: Olmos is a famous actor, producer, and film and television director. He has an extensive history of activism for various causes and is known for “getting his hands dirty”. After the 1992 riots, Olmos helped with the clean-up efforts, and in 1988, he founded Latino Public Broadcasting. He sits on several boards and works closely with non-profit organizations, in particular, disabled and sexually abused children. He also has won countless awards including the Screen Actors Guild, Golden Globe winner, and Emmy nominations. He continues to act and participate in causes addressing current issues.
Tribute to Burbank: The Rivera’s wanted to acknowledge Burbank and thank their loyal customers that have been supportive of Tequilas over the past 10 years. They have found that the residents in Burbank have lots of pride regarding their city. Also, many tourists visit Tequilas because Burbank is one of the media capitals of the world. Finally, they believed it would be a fun mural to take pictures/selfies with while having delicious food.
All the actors and singers that were chosen are not only icons in their fields but amazing human beings. “They were chosen because they have used their platform for the greater good and benefit of the world. They are role models for their humanitarianism. Also, the mural sign of Burbank was chosen as an acknowledgment of the City of Burbank and awesome customers, and Burbank residents,” said Patricia.