Rae Fairbanks Mosher never thought she would be a business owner. But now, as the owner and manager of Carrburritos — a restaurant in Carrboro that serves fresh Mexican food — she can't imagine doing anything else.
Mosher was a public school teacher for 12 years, but her family had a long history in the restaurant industry. Her parents had a restaurant in California and opened up Carrburritos when she was 17.
“When my parents were ready to retire, I was faced with the choice of selling the restaurant and keep teaching or take over the restaurant,” she said.
Mosher said she had no desire to go into the restaurant business because of her established career in education. However, she was passionate about Carrburritos and didn't want to see it dissolve.
“I'm just way too sentimental. I couldn’t have sold the restaurant,” Mosher said. “I was proud of what my parents had built and it’s my home. Only Carrburritos would get me to switch over careers, not just any old restaurant.”
Mosher said she had initially underestimated the amount of work that goes into running a business. She’s now responsible for ensuring that the restaurant grows and improves.
“Carrburritos has been here for 20 years and its routine is down, but we're at a point where we need to freshen some things up a little bit,” she said.
Mosher said it can get difficult trying to balance all of the tasks between the limited crew members.
“Sometimes there’s just not enough people to go around,” she said. “We are a very small staff and we rely on each team member pretty heavily. There’s not a lot of room to get lost around here.”
Many of the employees stay in the business for a long period of time, Mosher said.
“Our manager has been here since we've opened,” she said. “One of our prep chefs has been here for 17 years, and a lot of our cooks are averaging 10 to 12 years.”
Cashier Angie Dannemiller has been working at Carrburritos for over three years and said she loves working for a close-knit family business. She began working at the restaurant immediately after she moved to Carrboro.
“I came in here to get a burrito, but they were so nice that when it was time to find a job I went,” she said.
Assistant manager Jessie Quinn has been working at Carrburritos for 11 years and said her favorite aspect of her job was working as a team.
“I was working at Armadillo Grill, and I switched over and haven't looked back since,” Quinn said. “Carrburritos couldn’t work without all of us.”
Quinn said Tuesday is one of the busiest, because it's the only day the restaurant serves a tofu special.
“Absolutely everybody loves our tofu and we've had it forever,” she said.
Carrburritos is open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
“It’s a good place to come to get a good dinner and margarita,” Quinn said.
To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.