If you’re headed to San Francisco this holiday season, you’ll find a little slice of Modesto on Fisherman’s Wharf. Actually, it’s a lot of slices.
The owners of Mango Crazy, which has two locations in Modesto, are opening their third shop in San Francisco’s popular tourist destination this weekend. The eatery specializes in Mexican street food-inspired dishes made with sliced fresh fruit topped with sweet/savory spices.
The San Francisco spot is the first in what childhood friends and co-owners Andy Lopez and Larry Rivera hope will be their new Mango Crazy empire, with franchises across the state and even the country.
“The feeling for Andy and I as owners is truly special, without a doubt, but the most gratifying feeling is going to be seeing the customer response,” Rivera said about the opening. “We dedicated countless hours to optimizing the floor plan, re-engineering our customer experience, and defining the true meaning behind our brand. We are a family-friendly, fun concept, and this flagship store portrays that in every way.”
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The two Downey High graduates have partnered with fellow Modesto native Wayne Green, who now lives in San Francisco, to expand Mango Crazy’s reach. The 1,365-square-foot space is on Jefferson Street, just west of popular Pier 39 and across from the Pier 43 ferry arch. It sits along the newly newly remodeled Zephyr Walk, next to a Starbucks.
Rivera said he was excited about introducing their menu — a variety of dishes like fruit cups, seafood ceviche and ice cream dishes seasoned with Tajin, chamoy and other chili-based sauces — to a whole new audience including tourists from across the globe. The new site also has a special mango peeling machine, where customers can watch the fruit skin get twirled along a conveyor belt.
“Mango Crazy is honestly a good fit in any location, but what drove us to San Francisco and Fisherman’s Wharf was the diversity and footprint,” he said. “We are strategically located near Pier 39, which has become a destination location for people all over the world, and our products will complement any traveler’s palate. After all, mango is a super fruit that can be treasured by all cultures, ethnicities and backgrounds.
Expect the menu to be the same as at its two Modesto locations — the original in the Village One Plaza shopping center and a drive-thru location on Kansas Avenue. But Rivera said they’re already testing some new menu items to add in the new year. As for the Modesto shops, which opened in 2014 and 2015 respectively, they plan to continue their regular operations and keep their product consistent across the sites.
But just because the men have big plans for Mango Crazy’s future, don’t think they’re going to forget their Modesto roots.
“Our goal from this expansion is to franchise and bring Mango Crazy to satisfied customers from all states across the U.S.,” Rivera said. “As such, we are building various brand standards and operating procedures that will eventually reflect in Modesto. However, we intend to do something special in Modesto to pay homage to our origination.”
Check out the grand opening of Mango Crazy starting at 10 a.m. Saturday at 51 Jefferson St. in San Francisco; ribbon cutting ceremony will be at 2 p.m. The Fisherman’s Wharf site will be open 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. For more information, call 415-926-8075 or visit http://mangocrazy.com.