SCRANTON, Pa. — Wanda's Mofongo House has been here along South Main Avenue in Scranton for almost two years. One of those years has been arguably the worst year ever to own a restaurant, but Wanda Tiburcio says she's been able to navigate the COVID-19 restrictions and shutdowns pretty well.
"We did it just to go, pick up and go, and I have a lot of support. We have online services, and that helped us a lot," Tiburcio said.
Mofongo is a traditional Dominican and Puerto Rican dish made from fried plantains. It seems like customers can't get enough because Wanda is doing something you're not likely to see during the pandemic. She's opening a second location.
"My husband was pushing me, so, every day I'd be like, 'I don't know what to do, should we open this?' And he was like, 'We have to open this and see what's going to happen.' He's like right behind me, and we're going to do it!"
Going from one location to two is a big jump. It's a leap to open a second restaurant location in downtown Scranton in the middle of a pandemic.
Wanda's Mofongo House 2 will open in the 100 block of Wyoming Avenue.
A business opening in the downtown will be a welcome sight after a year that saw several restaurants close for good.
Wanda says she knows it's a risk, but she's confident in her customer base. Her food is very popular among the minority communities in Scranton. They're the secret to her success.
"I have my community, the whole Spanish community. It's been really helpful, supporting us every day. And I think I have the African-American community coming a lot here. I have all these communities coming here, and I think that's been helping."
The second location of Wanda's Mofongo House is set to open next week on Wyoming Avenue.