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A Venezuelan family's odyssey to gastronomic success in the Emerald City

A Venezuelan family's odyssey to gastronomic success in the Emerald City

Photo: Thanks to Grecia Carrero

Creole food, with its exquisite taste and unforgettable aroma, will always be synonymous with home and memories of pleasant moments. This is how it is in a family Seattle His love for Venezuela and his desire to create a better future are mixed in an irresistible gastronomic project “Paperpass”. In this long life of challenging unknown limits, they embarked on a journey that led them to reinvent themselves on American soil and conquer palates in the Emerald City.

The starting point was difficult, but after achieving the dual opening of its food trucks and restaurants, it became a new project. The ingredients and dedicated planning of those from San Cristóbal come together to create truly characterful dishes, where arepas, empanadas and papillon never fail. Gracia Carreiro, one of its admirable founders, spoke with humility and pride about the effort behind this business, which does not take long to grow as a franchisee.

By: Elizabeth Gutierrez | lapatilla.com

Seattle's culinary scene surrenders to Creole seasoning Babarepas And the loyalty of its diners ensures its excellent service. But behind a successful venture is a visionary team consisting of Gricia, her husband Juan and their three children, who have worked tirelessly for years to make a dream come true on American soil.

Expanding their horizons and venturing into the competitive world of gastronomy in the largest city in Washington State was a challenge for them to stay united as a family. “Louise had already lived in Washington state for several years and encouraged us to come here to start a food business so we could be together again.”Greece explained.

Team work

Initially, they thought about the idea of ​​opening a restaurant, but resources were scarce at the time, so they decided to start their first food truck. However, migration and entrepreneurship abroad presented the greatest challenges for Venezuelans.

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Photo: Thanks to Grecia Carrero

“The experience was so difficult, I can only describe our odyssey. We left Venezuela in 2001 in search of better opportunities for our children. It was like we were parachuted into a world where we knew no friends or family. It was very difficult to leave everything behind, but there was no going back for us.. “It's not for us, it's for our family.”said.

He recalled that since they arrived in America 23 years ago, they had to face great sacrifices. Despite the difficulties, she said her determination to create a better future for her family kept them on their path.

Photo: Thanks to Grecia Carrero

“There were very difficult times, great shortages, but God is great and many generous people helped us through that crisis. Our attitude is always to do what we have to do”.

Creole delicacies in Seattle

The grueling process of “starting over” they went through, in the midst of the lack of knowledge and techniques needed to execute the cooking plan, lengthened working hours and doubled everyone's efforts. Although the cost of planning was high, the passion and enthusiasm empowered them to create exquisite recipes. “Family Association and God Guided Us”He promised.


Indulging in its menu is simply a journey of flavors, which is why Popparepas has captured the senses of diners in Seattle. From traditional arepas to tempting empanadas and the iconic Creole pavilion, every bite is a ticket to Venezuela. But it didn't stop there; Over time, they added other delicacies like fried yucca, tostones, and the irresistible tequeños.

A good news for those who want to enjoy Paparepas delicacies without leaving home is that they offer delivery services through well-known sites in the US. Still, the best way Taste its varied menu By accessing one of its two restaurants, one is located Kent And one more Capitol Hill.

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Photo: Thanks to Grecia Carrero

If more street style is your thing, they maintain two food trucks that transport the essence of Venezuela to different corners of the city. Thus, Paparepass has created a culinary network that embraces those seeking unparalleled gastronomic adventure.


However, the secret to Paparepas' success is its star product: the arepa. “People love its taste and virtues.” declared Greece. But beyond the quality of the food, it's the commitment to authenticity that makes the difference.

presence and reliability

Adaptation is not easy.“It's a long and expensive road.”Grecia explained that because in an environment where the influence of Mexican food was predominant and the Latino presence was minimal, introducing the concept of her business required time, commitment and determination. “God has given us strength to endure”He noted.

Loyalty to Creole cuisine is a priority for Paparepas. Although they received recommendations and teachings from local customers, they expanded their gastronomic horizons with new ways to enjoy arepas, never giving up their essence.

Photo: Thanks to Grecia Carrero

“Customers have taught us how to eat the arepa, they have shown us that the arepa is more than just shredded meat and cheese, we can eat it with everything, there is something for all tastes and ethnicities. “We presented a product and the customer showed us variations (…) Our food represented the typical tastes of our childhood”He promised.

Photo: Thanks to Grecia Carrero

Gracia described enthusiasm as key to the development of paparazzi. Humility is evident when she shares that while she and her husband still feel like “6-year-olds” in the business world, her approach is focused on happiness and commitment to her clients and work team.

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“We don't see it as work, we have fun and make every day's adventure worthwhile”He said.

Raising the tricolor flag

Gracia and her husband Juan's greatest recognition goes beyond sales figures or awards. The pride children feel when they know their work is appreciated.

We are here not only to lay solid foundations for them, but also to help new immigrants who need advice or the warmth of a father and mother in these distant lands.. “I thank God for this opportunity to share the education and love for our neighbors that Venezuela and our family once gave us.”He reflected.

Greece's vision is projected on the horizon with the hope of reaching more people with the potential to grow and become franchisees.

Photo: Thanks to Grecia Carrero

Carrying the tricolor aloft through Paparepass is both an honor and a challenge for this brave Creole. Although time has passed since he left, he admits that he still feels mixed emotions when he remembers his homeland.

“We represent the Venezuelan people who, despite having everything, had to make the decision to seek a better future and better opportunities for their families.”He said.

In every areba and tequiño that emerges from Paparepas kitchens, there is a story of perseverance, resilience and love. It was a family that turned hardships into opportunities and took the flavor of Venezuela beyond limits. In Greek words, “It's possible, we're strong, we're here to tell you that hard work, respect and determination can make dreams come true”.