PAWTUCKET – Matos Bakery won the First Place People’s Choice Award for best empanadas as part of the first Pawtucket Central Falls Empanada Fest on Sept. 18. That event, following up on Restaurant Weeks, was highly successful, said organizers, with more than 250 people attending and 10 restaurants serving at Slater Park.
Final invoices for Restaurant Weeks in Pawtucket and Central Falls were still being tallied, but the Pawtucket Planning and Redevelopment Department is proposing using $1,000 of $1,500 remaining in the city’s marketing line item for Restaurant Week on a downtown event in Pawtucket on Nov. 6.
The event, planned to be a Small Business Saturday, is intended to bring customers to walk and explore the downtown, particularly local restaurants on Main Street. The city is in talks with several businesses and the local arts community to be part of the event, which will also feature a vaccine clinic.
Emily Rizzo, spokeswoman for Mayor Donald Grebien’s office, said a big reported increase in empanada sales at Matos since their win is exactly what was intended with the event, and officials are very excited about their success.
Grebien was joined by Sen. Sandra Cano, a member of the Restaurant Week Committee on behalf of Navigant Credit Union, along with Restaurant Week Committee members Nathan Luciano and Anthony Hebert from the Planning Department, at the presentation of all the award-winning empanada makers. Representative Carlos Tobon joined in at Caprichos, which took the First Place Judge’s Award. Las Delicias de Mi Tierra won the Second Place Judge’s Award.