Leonardo’s Market is a brother and sister’s dream come true
Nery Leonardo moved to Park City from Mexico in 1999 and fell in love with the people here and the mountains.
“I love the snow,” she says. “That’s why I never moved.”
When she moved here, she says the town was much smaller.
“I remember, (there was) one car every 10 or 20 minutes,” she says, gesturing out toward S.R. 224. “It was so quiet.”
The town’s growth was good, but for her and her family, something was missing.
“There was no Mexican market here,” she says, explaining that everyone had to make the drive down to Salt Lake for ingredients essential to traditional Mexican cuisine.
“One day I think, why not open (a market),” says Nery.
Over two decades later, on Oct. 14, 2022, Nery and her brother, Hugo, opened Leonardo’s Market, a small-but-well-stocked Mexican shop, adding the taqueria because “tacos in Mexico are popular.”
Nery says that opening a store was a dream come true. In Park City, she worked at first in housekeeping and at 7-Eleven, and her brother Hugo worked in restaurants.
Now she loves the customer interaction and the community she has through Leonardo’s.
“I am so happy,” she says, when hearing people come into the story saying, “Hi, Nery!” “(It’s) like people coming to your house.”
Married and raising four kids, the oldest at Park City High School and the youngest at Park City Day School, Nery says her whole family has been involved in the store.
“It’s a family business,” she says. “My brother, husband, kids, my sister sometimes,” they all help out at Leonardo’s.
The market is open daily from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., tucked along S.R. 224 at the edge of Kimball Junction.
With almost a full year under their belt, the two have been thrilled with the steady business at their small market and taqueria.
“We have a lot of customers,” says Nery. “All people: Suramérican, white, Mexican, Jamaican, Colombian.”
Nery says their two most popular products are nopal, the wide cactus leaves grilled or pickled for various Mexican dishes, and juagues or guaje verde, also known as wild tamarind. These are long, flat pods with seeds that can be eaten alone, added to salsa or included in other dishes.
Most of the products offered in the store are brought from Mexico, where Nery’s family is from.
“Tacos and market and butcher, the combination is good for the people,” says Nery. It’s a one-stop shop, especially for difficult to find ingredients in the Wasatch Back.
In the future, Nery and her brother hope to open another market, either in Park City or Heber City. They also want to expand their product offerings.
“This is mostly Mexican,” she says, but one day they want to have products from countries like Colombia, Peru, Venezuela and other parts of South America.
At the taqueria, she recommends the al pastor and asada tacos ($3.50 each), but there are many other traditional Mexican foods like birria, sopes and tostadas.
Learn more at their website at leonardosmarket.com and visit their store at 6300 Sagewood Dr., Unit D and E.
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