Meet Your BOK Winner: Marilyn Parham of Soccer Taco

Winner: Best Mexican, Best Margarita

What does it mean to you to win Best of Knoxville?

It's a validation of our good food and service. It lets us know we're the best!

Is there anything new in the works for any of your three locations around Knoxville?

Well, we are currently finishing a new bar area downstairs at our location in Market Square, downtown. It will help with the overflow of people during lunch and provide a more relaxing place to grab a cold beer. Other than that everything is going great at our locations in Bearden and Maryville.

Do you have a favorite soccer team? If so who?

No, but our downtown manager Jaime does. He has liked Manchester United since their days with David Beckham. Coming from Mexican heritage, he especially likes watching Mexican striker Chicharito play for his favorite team.

What is it like working with an all-female team of owner/managers in Knoxville?

It's great. We are all friends, we work well together, and each have our different strengths. I usually cover our accounting, Nelia Kritley is our people person and does our operations, Stefanie Houser is our advertising/marketing guru, and Viviana Nicholas is our original owner. Viviana is actually with her husband in Egypt living at the consulate while he is on duty.

What makes your margaritas so popular with the people of Knoxville? Is there a secret?

Well a margarita as big as ours definitely has a big secret ingredient. Sorry Knoxville, but I'm not telling.

How do you set your restaurant apart from other Mexican-style restaurants around Knoxville?

I would say the authenticity of our menu, food, and overall restaurant style puts us apart from the other Mexican restaurants in the area. Our waitstaff also gives us a friendly and authentic feel.

What is your favorite dish at Soccer Taco? What seems to be the most popular?

I personally like the Chimichanga the best, but our fish tacos are usually the most popular with our customers.

I know the Women's World Cup starts this month. Are there any other special events coming up that will be great to watch at Soccer Taco?

Really? I didn't know about that, ha-ha, but I know we will be open for all of the games. We will have plenty of specials coming this summer, too. The United States men's team is playing in the Gold Cup against Central and North American nations. We are hoping the U.S. plays their rival Mexico in the finals. We always get a great crowd and have a fun time with that game.