After spending 20 years in Boulder, Peter Waters knows the city well. He understands the values of residents, the schedules of tourists and the behaviors of college students. As it turns out, running a successful restaurant requires only a small knowledge about business but a deep understanding of the customer base - making Peter the perfect man for the job.
Back in 2012, T/aco first opened its doors in downtown Boulder. Peter was friends with the owners who, at the time, were juggling a few different restaurant endeavors. They asked him to step away from his corporate job to help get the restaurant off the ground. Peter agreed - and he never looked back. Eventually, his friends brought him in as a partner, bringing an end to his corporate career.
“My favorite aspect of working in the restaurant industry is serving as a hub-and-spoke model for customers. Guests come in and we get to know them, and then we are able to connect them to other guests with shared business interests or overlapping personal lives. It’s a privilege to act as a connector in the Boulder community and interact with customers from all walks of life,” said Peter.
T/aco focuses on serving authentic Mexican cuisine with fresh ingredients. “Our kitchen staff is 100% female, first-generation Mexican descent. We are incredibly proud of our staff and our ability to deliver authentic, great tasting food.”
The biggest way to support T/aco is to dine in the restaurant or order food to-go. “We miss people. For our regular customers, it’s similar to cutting someone’s hair every day. We see them walk in and we already have their food order in and drink on the table. We know what their kids are up to and how work is going. The opportunity to engage with people is really special and important. If you used to work downtown but now work remotely, keep up your lunch routines. Stop by and say ‘hi’ and grab a drink!”
Some people have restaurant experience, and some people have people experience. For Peter, running a successful business has always been about the latter. “It’s a gift to work in the restaurant industry. But it’s an honor to do it in Boulder.” Follow T/aco on social media (@tacoboulder) and pull up a stool to chat with Peter the next time you are in.
Peter also owns Ruthies Boardwalk Social - check out that story here.