Eddie Hernandez was born in Monterey, Mexico, and as a child, learned to cook from his grandmother. He moved to Atlanta in 1989 and found work at a Mexican restaurant south of Atlanta. He quickly made his mark in the kitchen, laying the groundwork for his business partnership with Taqueria del Sol CEO Mike Klank. They opened the first Taqueria del Sol on Atlanta’s Westside in 2000, creating a menu inspired by Hernandez’s native country and Klank’s experiences in the American Southwest. Today, Eddie’s spicy Turnip Greens, Memphis Pork Barbecue Tacos, and Blue Plate Specials draw crowds stretching to the sidewalks at three locations in Atlanta and their newest venue in Athens. He and Klank have been named semi-finalists in the James Beard Foundation Awards for Excellence’s Outstanding Restaurateur category.