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Kevin Dagnino of Ayawaska Restaurants – Restaurateur of the Quarter

By in 2021 - Volume 23

Meet our latest RESTAURATEUR OF THE QUARTER: Kevin Dagnino of Ayawaska Restaurants

Kevin’s successful history has been a result of his commitment to his philosophy which is follow your dreams, be positive and keep pushing. Everything he has accomplished has been a result of practicing his philosophy throughout his life.

Kevin was born in Peru where he graduated from college with degrees in business administration and computer science. He was working as a manager for a phone company before he came to California in 1997 to join his wife, Romina, who previously came to California to be with her mother who previously relocated there. After arriving in California, Kevin went back and forth between Peru and California to wrap up his business and personal affairs in preparation of moving to California to settle where he has been since 1999. His first job in California was driving a cookie truck and he eventually became a manager. In 2001 he opened a janitorial company which is called Gianlui Services, headquartered in Marin County which currently has 52 employees and the company specializes in doing janitorial services for commercial businesses and specializes in office cleaning and floor maintenance and currently services 35 Whole Foods Markets in Northern California.

Kevin also worked for a number of restaurants including a number of Peruvian restaurants doing janitorial work for them which gave him an appetite for the restaurant business. He opened Ayawaska, his first restaurant in Petaluma in 2019, which has been extremely successful. Ayawaska is home to fresh authentic Peruvian cuisine with a special modern twist. Their mission is to provide a world class dining experience into the rich and vibrant taste of Peru. A large menu hits all the high points, including several types of fish ceviche, yucca, quinoa, beef dishes and preparations that showcase the region’s melting pot of cuisines from China and Japan to Spain, France and indigenous peoples. Sweet, salty, savory and spicy flavors intermingle in each dish using corn, raisins, yellow peppers and piquant spices. Pisco-spiked cocktails made with the much-loved brandy of Peru topped with egg whites, mixed with lime and served up icy cold.

Steve Zimmerman, the owner of Restaurant Realty, had the pleasure of putting Kevin into his second Ayawaska location in Novato at the former site of the historic Hilltop Restaurant & Bar which was originally built in 1892. Kevin did a remarkable job in remodeling the restaurant which has also been extremely busy since opening a couple of months ago. We wish Kevin and his family continued success and may he continue throughout life to follow his dreams, be positive and keep pushing.

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