Christina “Christy” Vega Fowler, Owner/Operator
The Vega family has been in the restaurant biz for decades. And they continue the family tradition to this day.
13301 Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks 818-788-4868 | casavega.com
The Vega family has been in the restaurant biz for decades. And they continue the family tradition to this day. Ray Vega, the father of Casa Vega owner/operator Christy Vega, opened Casa Vega in 1956. After managing a restaurant on Olvera Street for 18 years, Ray’s parents came to work with him at the newly-opened Casa Vega as hostess and bartender. Nearly 50 years later—11 years ago—Christy got involved and now oversees the day-to-day operation of the restaurant along with her father. Christy is a self-proclaimed “Valley Girl”—born at St. Joe’s in Burbank. She graduated from Saint Mary’s College in Northern California with a degree in business administration and economics. Her goal is to continually update and improve aspects of Casa Vega while maintaining its authenticity and tradition. Considered an icon in the San Fernando Valley, Casa Vega serves traditional Mexican cuisine crafted from recipes passed down through several generations of the Vega family. “This is not Nuevo Mexican,” Christy explains. “It’s fresh, homemade Mexican food.”
Tell us a bit about your executive chef:
“Executive Chef Braulio Arellano attended culinary school in Mexico and has worked with us for 26 years. He oversees a culinary staff of 19.”
Does your family get together and cook together often outside the restaurant?
“My family and I always gather at my parent’s house. That is where we cook, eat and laugh together. The family kitchen is where all the best gossip is!”
What is your favorite dish on your restaurant’s menu?
“The Chicken Mole in the red sauce. The sauce has more than 16 ingredients and simmers for hours. It is to die for.”
Who is your culinary role model?
“My grandmother. She could make tamales for a party of 50 without breaking a sweat!”
Mirabelle Wine Bar offers a three-course, prix fixe dinner on Sunday nights in Valley Village, which is especially ambitious given their limited kitchen.