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Zajur Family of La Siesta Restaurant Featured on Legacy List

Legacy List Zajurs
Matt Paxton chats with Lisa and Michel Zajur on Legacy List with Matt Paxton.

Remember La Siesta Restaurant?

For thirty years, La Siesta was a staple of Mexican cuisine and Hispanic culture for the Richmond region, until it closed in 2009. During that time, owners Michel Zajur and his wife, Lisa, created more than delicious food and fond memories for generations of Richmonders, their restaurant became a hotspot for the Hispanic community and a center for cross-cultural education in the metro region. 

This Monday, Michel and Lisa are featured working with the team at Legacy List with Matt Paxton to downsize their North Chesterfield home where the Zajurs lived and raised a family for thirty years - as well as sort through their rich legacy, deeply embedded in our community. 

“Although we were apprehensive about doing the show at first we took them up on their offer,” said the Zajurs. “We truly enjoyed the experience. Meeting Matt Paxton and getting to know him, felt like hanging out with your good friend.”

In the episode, Matt and his team uncover a treasure of La Siesta nostalgia to warm the hearts of all who remember and loved the restaurant - including Matt and several members of the Legacy List team. The Zajurs added, “Matt brought out the sentimental moments we experienced while filming the show, which took us by surprise, and meant so much to us.”

On the Zajurs’ Legacy List: the recipe for La Siesta’s famous white sauce. 

La Siesta Michel Zajur
Michel Zajur teaches Hispanic culture to school children back in the day at La Siesta Restaurant in North Chesterfield.

Matt’s team also discovers important links to Michel’s Mexican heritage as well as Lisa’s family history. Their story is one of establishing roots and giving back to the community.

Using La Siesta’s success, Michel and Lisa Zajur provided cross-cultural education throughout communities in Virginia. Seeing a greater need for connection, Michel established the Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, linking the Hispanic business community within the Commonwealth of Virginia and providing education, information and resources for the greater Hispanic community. The Zajurs are also responsible for RVA’s Que Pasa Festival, highlighting Hispanic food, music, dance, and culture for the Richmond region each spring for over 15 years. 

The legacy of La Siesta lives on.

And the white sauce? Tune in for the full scoop.

Legacy List with Matt Paxton featuring Michel and Lisa Zajur airs this Monday, January 25, at 9:00 p.m. on VPM, or stream it from the VPM website or through your PBS Passport.