Policy

Meet a Merchant: Derick

Derick is the owner of The Freakin Rican, an authentic Puerto Rican restaurant in Queens, New York. The DoorDash Accelerator for Local Restaurants made it possible for him to start his delivery service and expand his business.

6/1/2023
Corp - DDI - Merchant - Derick - Freakin Rican

“The DoorDash Accelerator for Local Restaurants gave me a grant, and with that grant, we started our delivery service.”

Even as a kid, Derick dreamed of becoming a restaurant owner.

“I knew that I would have a restaurant since I was very young,” he says. “I think maybe about nine years old. I would tell my sister that I wanted a Cuchifrito [a Puerto Rican fried food shop]. And I ended up having much more than a Cuchifrito. Now I have a brand.”

Derick built his Freakin Rican brand from scratch, starting with a stand at street fairs. He worked for years to cultivate a clientele and get the name out there.

He realized a huge goal with a brick-and-mortar restaurant, but the challenges didn’t stop.

Like with most restaurants, the pandemic hit The Freakin Rican hard.

“I knew that I would have a restaurant since I was very young.”

“From the bodega to the laundromat, we were the only light on. So it was really, really tough,” he recalls. “The DoorDash Accelerator for Local Restaurants gave me a grant, and with that grant, we started our delivery service.”

The new delivery service ended up being a lifeline for Derick’s business—not to mention a huge boost for his community.

With every order of The Freakin Rican that’s delivered, customers get “authentic Puerto Rican food, like your grandma would cook. For those of you that don't have your grandma, you get that soul and that love in the food.”

These days, Derick still has big ambitions.

“My dream is getting The Freakin Rican to multiple boroughs. Maybe have one in each borough, and eventually franchise. And DoorDash would play a big role.”