Bastrop Mexican restaurant Ma’Coco is opening an Austin location this summer. The new restaurant is taking over the former space belonging to Italian sandwich restaurant La Matta on 501 Comal Street in East Austin. It opened on Thursday, July 29 with a limited menu for dine-in and takeout services.
Through Ma’Coco, co-owners Javier and Judith Equihua wanted to “represent our family traditions with a twist of our San Diego upbringing with comfort foods,’’ as Javier explains to Eater. This means a menu focused on Mexican fare from San Diego and Baja California, full of tacos on corn tortillas, California-style burritos (stuffed with french fries), enchiladas, quesadillas, tortas, and more. Desserts include churro doughnuts, buñuelos, and flan. As for drinks, there are aguas frescas, beers, and a liquor list emphasizing tequilas.
The Equihuas were living in San Diego when they decided to finally open a restaurant together. In 2018, they searched for small towns in Texas, selected Bastrop, quit their jobs (Javier from Google, Judith from NBC), moved east, and opened Ma’Coco that September. “I felt Bastrop was a great starting point for the business because of its growth and the access to Austin’s resources,” says Javier. The name honors their grandmother and mother. The siblings had always wanted to expand into Austin, but they wanted to make sure the circumstances were right.
This opening of Ma’Coco in Austin means that La Matta, the casual Italian sandwich shop from the restaurant company New Waterloo that had been temporarily closed since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, is now permanently shuttered. It had opened in late 2017. Nearly next-door sibling spot Italian restaurant Il Brutto is open for dine-in and takeout services. Eater has reached out for more information.
The Equihuas are redesigning the Comal Street space themselves with the help of the design company Boomtown.
Currently, its hours are from11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for lunch service this week. It’ll expand its hours with dinner and weekend brunch at a later date. The Bastrop location will remain in operation.
Update, July 29, 2:33 p.m.: This article, originally published on May 3, has been updated to reflect Ma’Coco’s Austin opening status.