Manuel Rojas, the patron of Boyle Heights' iconic burrito joint El Tepeyac and a pillar of the community, passed away this week, according to L.A. Observed. Rojas, who helped turn his family's restaurant into the Evergreen Avenue legend it is today following the passing of his father in the fifties, is credited on El Tepeyac's website as having created some of its most massive and monstrous creations, including the signature Hollenbeck burrito, named for the neighborhood police department and containing what Jonathan Gold famously called "an old-line Mexican restaurant's entire No. 2 dinner wrapped into a tortilla the size of a pillowcase." More recently, Adam Richman confronted the owner's eponymous, five-pound "Manuel's Special" on Man Vs. Food, recreating a quest many daring eaters have undertaken, but very few have seen to its end. As a fitting testament to the kind man that stuffed our city for generations, more than 1,300 Facebook fans have already left memories and memorials to the late, great owner through the site "Who remembers in East L.A."
Manuel Rojas, burrito maestro of El Tepeyac [LA Observed]