When Sal Lujano Jr. learned a downtown restaurant was planning to focus more on a food truck, he saw an opportunity.
And come June, that opportunity will become a reality with the opening of Del Puente Café in the 700 block of Main, where the Under 701 Café currently operates.
The restaurant business comes naturally to Lujano; his family operates the Aculpulco that has been in business downtown for more than 30 years, currently making burritos and Tex-Mex on East Broadway.
But Sal Jr. does not want to compete with his father.
Del Puente will concentrate on breakfast and lunch, its doors closed by mid-afternoon. The Aculpulco will crank up in mid-morning for lunch and dinner crowds.
“We feel like there is a need for homemade, nice breakfast,” Lujano said.
That breakfast could be bacon and eggs, or pancakes with Mexican caramel. And, he said, for cuisine he calls “modern Mexican.”
Puente means bridge, which Lujano said can be symbolic of many things.
“It is a connector between American favorites with Mexican favorites,” Lujano said. “We are bridging our dream of offering this to Newton.”
Del Puente Café will be another family affair, opened by Sal Jr., his wife Angeles and mother-in-law Tomasa Carbajal.
Del Puente Café will offer a full breakfast menu, designed for a grab-and-go breakfast with a little different flair. Eggs and bacon will be on the menu, but so will Central American flavor.
At lunch diners will find Mexican fare — burritos will on the menu — but there will be more as well. The lead cook will be Carbajal, who has worked in restaurants in Central America and Hawaii.
There will be an emphasis on health-conscious fare when the eatery opens. Less fried food, with healthier breads and gluten free options will dot the menu.
“We’re staying away from grease and oils,” Sal Lujano said. “We’ve done that by tracking down recipes from Central America to offer great foods.”
The eatery will be open from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, with the family targeting the first week of June for an opening.