Meet the team!

Jimena Urrutia

Jimena is one of the original co-owners of Empanola. Born in Argentina, she moved to Chile in her youth and started her education there. While doing her bachelor's in Business she took an exchange program in Nola and finished her degree here. After living a couple of years here, she came back and met Marcelo, her future husband, and they started to build a life in Chile. Of course, she felt in love with New Orleans and always wanted to come back. 10 years later, the whole family moved to New Orleans in 2016, and their dream of having a restaurant was born. She was the mastermind behind the idea of making empanadas, actually. Since then Jimena and her husband have worked and worked with all their heart to build this business and our family's dream.

Marcelo Garcia

Marcelo was also one of the original co-owners with Jimena to create Empanola. He was born and raised in Chile all his life, where he studied Advertisement and Marketing. After working 25 years and positioning himself as a Co-owner of one of the best advertising agencies in Chile, something was not clicking anymore. He and the whole family needed a change of scenery and due to the past experiences of Jimena in Nola, they decided to come here and try it out. At first, it was only going to be a gap year where they studied English and other hobbies, yet Nola ended up being the city of their dreams and where they saw themselves in the future. As noted before, Empanola was the way for the family to remain here and actually try the new passion of Marcelo as a chef. He had a natural talent with food that has never been explored before and with the help of Dominique Rizzo, creator of La Boulangerie, he was able to begin his new career as chef of Empanola. Since then, he puts all his heart in creating our delicious fillings and researching new flavors to create the best empanadas.

Javier Urrutia

Family-owned from our hearts to your table.

Here are some pictures of our big family of empanolians, including employees, ex-employees, and actual family!

love made