Mr. Pollo No Longer Has Its Chef

Roxy's Cafe, which was just a smoothie shop.
Roxy's Cafe, which was just a smoothie shop. Photo: Luis C./Yelp

As reported in November, Manny Torres Gimenez, the young chef who’s been doing some ambitious and very inexpensive food the last couple years out of a tiny hole called Mr. Pollo in the Mission, had expanded down the street with an Italian prix fixe menu at Roxy’s Café (2847 Mission Street). It turns out the move was not an expansion but a negotiation tactic, and eventually a Plan B — the landlord at Mr. Pollo wanted to raise his rent, and after Gimenez refused, the operation has continued with one of Gimenez’s cooks and Gimenez’s menu, but without Gimenez. As he tells the Scoop today, “I’m going be the bigger man and not do anything.” Instead, he’s cooking full time now at Roxy’s, which is three times larger, but where he has to use all induction burners and pans. Still, as is his wont, he’s keeping it ambitious, cooking with Asian and Latin American influences as well as Italian, and offering both a three-course menu for $25 and a ten-course menu for $75. And so far, he’s doing everything himself, including wash dishes. [Scoop, Earlier]