All five of Jorge Saldana’s senses can still evoke his mother’s cooking for his nine siblings in his childhood kitchen in Guadalajara, Mexico. Rising in the air, the scent of fresh cilantro – pulled into pieces, not chopped to release its truest flavor – smashed garlic, coarsely cut onions and just ripe tomatoes still conjure delicious memories of home.
Providing the foundation for countless beloved recipes he shares in his restaurants and over the counter products sold in stores everywhere, Jorge believes that fresh and clean food is the best food, and the best food not only tastes good, but has the power to make you feel good. His passion for authentic Mexican cooking made with fresh and local ingredients has been at the center of his farm-to-table philosophy since the beginning.
Bringing with him his inborn love of authentic Mexican cooking, Jorge moved to California and opened his first restaurant, Cancun Sabor Mexicano, in downtown Berkeley in the early 1990s. As a pioneer of simple, natural, and healthy Mexican food, he offered fresh and authentic, traditional favorites that brought out loyal customers in droves. Soon, Jorge opened Tlaloc Sabor Mexicano in the San Francisco Financial District. In those earlier years, despite the pressure to process food and used canned goods to bring general costs down, he continued to embrace the same values he was raised with, never abandoning his core beliefs that farm-to-table food is not only the best tasting, but the best for your health and the health of the environment.
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