On a lazy Sunday a couple of weeks ago I opened up a can that was filled with one of my favorite Mexican stews of all time, I cut up a little Cilantro and onions a limon and busted out the birote bread. While the contents of the can started to boil in my stove, I took out a cup and poured a really cold Coca-Cola and took out a very deep bowl and a spoon. When I saw that the food was ready I poured it into my bowl and added all the ingredients along with some Tapatio and Oregano, steered and got down to it. That was probably the fastest a person has ever gotten a bowl of Menudito ready in the world. Thanks to Juanita’s canned Menudito I can enjoy a mexican dish that takes a whole day to cook in just under 10 minutes. Juanitas started like any other company in the world but who would of thought that his idea would take him to the top. Check out his story after the jump. And like they say “Life without Mexican Food Is No Life at all!

George De La Torre Jr., owner of Juanita’s Foods, was born in Wilmington, California in 1935. Under his leadership and guidance, Juanita’s Foods became the world’s largest producer of Menudo. His vision, passion and business acumen led him to recognize the increasing popularity of Mexican food in the US, while becoming the leader in the Mexican Food category.

He will be remembered by all as a generous, compassionate, loving, and kind gentleman. After serving his country in the U.S. Army, he attended Long Beach State University where he was named 49er of the year. George was an avid golfer and fisherman and participated in many other sports in his lifetime. George dedicated his life to Juanita’s Foods, and to his family, enjoying all of his grandchildren’s sporting events.

George was passionate about supporting the Wilmington community and youth, and over his lifetime established and nurtured friendships that will succeed him. His family and friends will miss his wise counsel and unspoken leadership dearly.

He is survived by his wife of fifty years Lee, and children Gina, Mark and Aaron. Also surviving are his grandchildren, Aeriel, Brad, Mark Jr., Erin, Brandon, Nicole, Alexander; a soon-to-arrive granddaughter; his mother, Elsie; sisters, Elaine, Sandra, Susan; and brother, Steve.

The strong family heritage of Juanita’s Foods continues as George’s sons, Mark and Aaron De La Torre, were named Co-CEO’s of the company in 2007 and are fully committed to continuing George’s impressive legacy.
Check out the rest of his story at Juanita’s Website.

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