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Texas chef Fermín Núñez among Food & Wine Magazine’s Best New Chefs of 2021


Texas chef Fermín Núñez has been named a Food & Wine Magazine Best New Chef of 2021. - CEDRIC ANGELES
  • Cedric Angeles
  • Texas chef Fermín Núñez has been named a Food & Wine Magazine Best New Chef of 2021.
Suerte may mean “luck” in Spanish, but Fermín Núñez — the chef at the helm of the whimsically-named Austin eatery — certainly has more than luck to thank for his recent accolade as a Food & Wine Magazine Best New Chef of 2021.

The chef and Mexican immigrant took to social media to dedicate his win to “all the young kids with ‘weird names,’ the ones that took English as a Second Language, to all the ‘Fermíns’ that are afraid and ashamed to talk about their immigration status,” Núñez wrote. “This one is for all of us.”

Suerte, located in Austin’s thriving East Sixth Street neighborhood, spends a great deal of time and effort perfecting its nixtamalization process — a painstaking one which transforms dried corn kernels into fresh dough used to make tortillas and tostadas.

Arguably its claim to fame, Suerte produces between 2,500 and 3,000 from-scratch tortillas each shift. The tortillas and tostadas are then accompanied by low-and-slow-cooked brisket, crudos, aguachiles and ceviches.

"Rather than flying corn from Mexico, which is outstanding, we wanted to take corn that was grown here in Texas and treat it like you would corn in Mexico," Núñez told Food & Wine Magazine.

"Our tortillas, they're not like Mexican tortillas," he says. "But they are inspired by Mexico, and they taste to me like Mexico."

Suerte – located at 1800 E 6th St. in Austin — is open from 5-10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 5-11 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday.

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