About Us

In 1995, I went to Mexico for the first time. I went to my wife’s hometown, Union de Tula, Jalisco, Mexico. I was amazed by the abundance of fresh fruit and exotic plants used in the cooking. A plethora of street side vendors offered everything from tacos to fresh Mango on a stick. I had “tunas” for the first time. I later learned that the name for “tunas” in English is Prickly Pear. This is the fruit that grows on the ends of cactus paddles. I loved the fruit and I loved the name and decided that if I ever opened my own Mexican restaurant I would name it The Prickly Pear.

In March of 2003, I opened The Prickly Pear with my partner, Eddie Chavez, in downtown Mooresville, NC. The building that housed The Prickly Pear was formerly St. Therese Catholic Church. The church was there from 1944 to 1989. We endured many trials and tribulations at this location. The building itself created a unique ambiance that paired well with our unique menu. We were blessed to have many loyal customers. On April 28, 2012, after nine years, we closed down this location.

On May 5, 2012, Cinco de Mayo, we reopened at our current location on Lake Norman, next to Vinnie’s Raw Bar. Although a different ambiance, our current location offers the same unique menu offerings combined with a beautiful view of Lake Norman and lakeside patio dining. We are now open daily from 11am to 10pm, Sunday thru Thursday and 11am to 11pm on Friday and Saturday. We have live music on Thursday night and Sunday night. We have expanded our dinner menu and we now offer a Antojitos (“cravings”) menu from 4pm to 6pm daily and after 9 pm.

Thank you for your interest in The Prickly Pear and we look forward to serving you.

Val Panizzut

About Us