Taste This Authentic Mexican Food by Vivi

Authentic Mexican Food

Vivi grew up in a small village in Mexico, wanting a better life, she moved to El Paso, Texas. After the death of her husband in 1987, she found herself alone and a single mom with small children. Fate stepped in at a wedding in El Paso where she met a couple from Anacortes who told her of the picturesque Pacific Northwest. Wanting a better life for her children she listened and dreamed of a place with trees and close to water. The couple invited her to stay with them while she found a job. Vivi took the plunge, sold most of what she owned, packed up the kids on a Greyhound bus and headed north.

In her dreams, she dreamed of a placed called Friday Harbor and decided that where was she wanted to live. When she reached the Pacific Northwest, she found a job as a dishwasher at bar and grill in Friday Harbor and soon moved her way up to cook. They were so impressed by her skills, her hard work, and energy; they moved her up to chef. Vivi became well known in Friday Harbor and on Friday’s, she started a Vivi’s buffet. This was just the beginning of a dream, a good life, and doing what she loved—cooking.

In 1992, she applied at the Anacortes School District to work in the high school’s kitchen, where she still works today. Commuting between the two islands, Vivi worked hard and eventually saved enough money to buy her first home in Anacortes, the year was 1997. She continued commuting until she found a job at a local Anacortes restaurant.

Working two jobs helped, but Vivi wanted more. As a young girl in the small village in Mexico she learned to cook from her mom. To earn some extra money she started selling homemade salsa, tortillas, and Pica de Gallo to various businesses in Anacortes. Her customer base grew and they were fiercely loyal. Kathy, a former city employee and loyal customer, encouraged Vivi to go into business, but Vivi only had $40, which she invested into the ingredients used to make the salsa, tortillas, and Pica de Gallo. What little profit she made was used to support her family. How do you go into business with such a small amount? Hard working and a determined mother, Vivi started cleaning houses and doing yard work, again building a customer base that was loyal and determined to help her.

Life changed again for Vivi in 2007. With $300 in her pocket and the help of some friends, she started Vivi’s Kitchen. One of her clients provided her with a commercial kitchen to prepare the food, then helped her get started with the Anacortes Farmers Market. Her dream of cooking authentic Mexican food was finally becoming a reality.

By word-of-mouth, loyal customers, and a presence at the Anacortes Farmers Market, her business grew. To expand even more, Vivi added catering to her services. By 2011 she saved enough money to build her own small commercial kitchen. All of her ingredients are fresh, and when possible, she buys locally. Her recipes are her own, made with love and what she has learned over the years from her mother, sister, and various cultures. Immersed in her kitchen she is doing what she loves—cooking and creating.

You will find Vivi’s kitchen at many of the local events in Anacortes; Anacortes Arts Festival, Music in the Park, Waterfront Festival, and Oyster Run. During the 2017 Anacortes Oyster Run she bought 1700 oysters and by the end of the day she had about a dozen left. That’s how good her food is.

This hardworking entrepreneur has built her little business up through hard work, determination, gumption, and the help of her community. And with taste, she will continue to serve Anacortes authentic Mexican food.

“It’s a pleasure for me to serve Anacortes with authentic Mexican food,” Vivi said.

Vivi built her passion for cooking authentic Mexican into her own kitchen. The dream of woman strong in determination, passionate about making a difference, and doing what she loves.



By Karla Locke

Author of The Blood Stone Queen and other ebooks, Freelance Writer for Stories from the Front Porch and other publications. Karla shares her passion of the arts and artists, photography, writing, small businesses, and people who live, work, and play with passion.

Created By
Karla Locke


Karla Locke

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