The Spanish word mariscos translates to seafood and refers to any of a number of edible marine animals such as shrimp, clams, crabs, and other crustaceans. At Gutierrez’s West Valley restaurant, he brings a taste of Sinaloa, Mexico to Phoenix, with fresh ceviche, melt-in-your-mouth fish, and savory shrimp dishes.
He fell in love with the kitchen at a very early age and as a troubled teenager, cooking offered an escape, he says. After working at a local cable company for 10 years, he decided to quit his job and pursue the path of entering the food service industry with his girlfriend, Rocio Luque.
“Without having any type of experience or knowledge of how to start a business I pulled all of my savings and got myself an empty food truck,” Gutierrez says. “The hope was to find someone to build my food truck and sell mariscos.”
After seven months Gutierrez’s dream didn’t become a reality. Instead of giving up, he purchased a big ice chest, bought a case of fish, made fresh ceviche, and loaded it up onto his girlfriend’s Ford Escape.
Then, he traveled all over town to Gilbert, Chandler, Mesa, Tolleson, Litchfield Park, and Glendale selling his creations.
Gutierrez’s days started at 3 a.m. as he prepped the mariscos to sell. Luque would help him prepare and by 11:30 a.m. he would pack everything up and head out on his rounds, only returning home once the ice chest was empty.
The couple then started a catering business called Mariscos El Jorgito. Over 11 months, they used word of mouth and social media to gain supporters and followers.
“At that point, we were all in and decided to give the food truck another shot, this time we were much more experienced and had a little more knowledge,” Gutierrez says.
In January 2019, Marsicos A Todo Mar was born as a fully operational food truck. By April 2022 the brick-and-mortar location of Mariscos A Todo Mar opened on 83rd Avenue in southwest Phoenix.
The quaint restaurant features lively regional Mexican music playing in the background and colorful decorations like illustrated seafood wallpaper and an industrial-style bar. The menu is packed with fresh, made-to-order dishes.
Some of the most popular are the restaurant’s botanas, Gutierrez says, pointing out the Callo De Hacha, or scallops, and the spicy aguachile made with cured shrimp and fresh vegetables.
“I have to say that since our food truck days, our Shrimp Crunchy Tacos are one of our top sellers,” he says. “It’s a crunchy shrimp taco that we top off with fresh cabbage, drizzled with our house-made Sriracha sauce with a side of pickled onions and a roasted jalapeno.”
Another must-try is the Camarones Encabronados, shrimp infused in garlic, butter, and spices served with corn on the cob and seasoned fries. Wash it down with a tall pour of limonada preparada, a sweet and fizzy limeade that will quench your thirst in the Arizona heat.
“I am very picky with my product and produce, so I only serve the best quality product. Customers come from other states such as New Mexico, Nevada, and California just to eat our Callo De Hacha,” Gutierrez says. “Our attention to detail, our dedication to our craft, and our commitment to our community is the core of our everyday operations.”
Although Gutierrez is an immigrant from Sinaloa, Mexico, Phoenix has become his home and community.
“I fell in love with the people since our street vending days, when I see the facial expressions that folks make when they taste my food, that’s what I love most,” he says, “seeing people get happy with joy when they are eating our food.”
Mariscos A Todo Mar
2632 South 83rd Avenue, Suite 108