El Mesón Sandwiches is a family business. has 36 restaurants in Puerto Rico and one in Orlando, Florida, in the Florida Mall which opened in June 2015. The company plans to open four more locations in Orlando 2017.
El Mesón expects to expand its locations by 2018 through franchises. Each unit of El Mesón Sandwiches averages $2 million dollars in sales annually. Sales of the entire system were close to $80 million in 2015.
The El Mesón sandwiches are usually served in criollo bread, a French style bread with a Caribbean flavor. Most sandwiches are served with tomato, cabbage, mayonnaise and margarine. The "Delicious" sandwich is prepared with turkey and bacon. The "White House" sandwich is grilled with roast beef, turkey, and mushrooms. In El Mesón you can also order your favorite sandwich in baked potato.
The first El Mesón Sándwiches restaurant opened in 1972 in the small coastal town of Aguadilla in the northwest corner of Puerto Rico. The restaurant was founded by Felipe Pérez, father of the current executive director, Felipe Pérez Grajales. The original restaurant was known for its homemade style sandwiches and a family atmosphere.
Many of El Mesón's first customers were American surfers who arrived early in the morning for hearty and healthy breakfasts. His requests prompted Mr. Perez to create the sandwich he called "El Bazous Surfer", which is served with fresh vegetables and soy protein. The second restaurant in Puerto Rico was opened in 1987, shortly after the young Pérez Grajales returned from the University of Jacksonville, Florida. This was followed by a rapid growth of the business.