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Mexican in Vancouver


peppyre
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Slivered and cooked nopal cactus paddles on their own have that hint-of-saliva quality similar to okra. But they accompany meats really well.

Although they're cultivated in the US and Mexico, I'm sure you can find them locally - try some of the markets on Commercial Drive. (On Vancouver Island, Thrifty's usually carries them. Of course you'll need to de-prick them before slicing!)

Memo - the succulent, won't pay the rent

I've seen cactus at South China Seas in Graville Island. Ouch!

Gastronomista

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Don cata for lunch today, which included a beef soup which was great. hearty and delicious.

Also had the al pastor and carnitas. Loved it.

I told him I'd call ahead to find out what week he's going to do menudo, but he said a lamb soup was up for next weekend (fri/sat).

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I'm hoping Doña Cata is still serving pozole on weekends (is that correct)?

Memo - po-zo-le, ay,ay,ay,ay...

Ríate y el mundo ríe contigo. Ronques y duermes solito.

Laugh, and the world laughs with you. Snore, and you sleep alone.

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  • 2 months later...

Yesterday my compadre and I had the great pleasure of having lunch at Cilantro & Jalapeño located at 736 Broadway ... a block or two west of Cambie. They make everything fresh everyday. A very good menu on the wall lists all the basics from Burritos, to wraps, to tamales and Taco plates. In a cooler they also have available for purchase a number of items including delicious Guacamole, Salsa, and Cilantro and Lime dip among other things.

I ordered a Big Burrito with the organic ground beef .... around $7.00 which came with a small salas and rice. It was very good and the whole plate was cleaned in no time. Washed down with an icy Mango Jarritos .... this lunch is pretty tops in my book.

I believe they are a sister store to a place in North Van called Jalisco something.

Anyway, friendly service, good, hot, tasty food and a nice location means I'll be back for sure.

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might be Jaliscos at Lonsdale Quay...i've been there a few times, thought it was ok. but i like dona cata better :biggrin:

Cilantro & Jalapeno looks like it's worth a try!

album of the moment: Kelley Polar - I Need You To Hold On While The Sky Is Falling - 2008
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I work once a month at the quay in nv, and ate at Jaliscos regularly. I'm sad to say that I noticed a significant decline in the food the last couple of times that I ate there. It's still a great spot to shop for ingredients though.

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I hit the mouse and bean for lunch on friday just after noon.

Service was insanely slow and our food took over an hour to get to us after ordering (which did not fare well for the three of us that had jobs to return to). Two of us ordered soup and 2 quesdillas, the others ordered enchildas.

My tortilla soup was barely warm when it arrived but was tasty, as were my quesdillas, but I'm never going back.

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  • 3 months later...

Speaking of Mexican....Saturday is Cinco de Mayo and although there is probably not much going on in most of the restaurants I heard that there is going to be a Cinco de Mayo celebration at the Roundhouse sponsored by the Mexican Consulate. There are supposed to be Botanos (mexican appy's) and something like 20 different kinds of Tequila available for tasting.

I'm afraid I don't have any more info than that (like cost and time), I read it in the Vancouver Sun today while having coffee but forgot to keep it! Anyone?

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  • 1 month later...

Someone told me there was a kick ass Mexican restaurant in Coquitlam but couldn't remember the name. We are heading out that way tomorrow and I was wondering if anyone knew of this place or has any suggestions? Thanks!

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seems like el caracol (the mexi-salvadorean place on the same block as chilo's) has taken over chilo's. i drove by a couple times and noticed different signage. no idea if chilo is still running the place or not... (we're talking about victoria drive location)

dona cata is still going strong though :biggrin:

album of the moment: Kelley Polar - I Need You To Hold On While The Sky Is Falling - 2008
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that might be Charlie's Cafe?

Is this the same as "Carlos or Charlie's" in Port Moody?

Great food. Service is a tad slow but I love the Enchiladas Verde.

"There are two things every chef needs in the kitchen: fish sauce and duck fat" - Tony Minichiello

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  • 2 weeks later...

Man I miss Chilo's .... he was the best taco in town IMO.

Four of us went to Dona Cata last night and had some severely lackluster tacos that have had 3 out of 4 of us regretting it over and over in the washroom. :sad:

Anyone know anything about Chilo and if he may open again?

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Four of us went to Dona Cata last night and had some severely lackluster tacos that have had 3 out of 4 of us regretting it over and over in the washroom.  :sad:

Carefull what you're implying Josh. :cool: Been there many times without any "extra-caricular" activity.

Seems like Chilo had a great product, but expanded too quickly.

Anyone been to Taco Shack? Haven't heard much from them either.

A.

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  • 1 month later...
A question posed by the great Keith Talent in the pizza debate thread got me thinking.  I really can't think of one good Mexican restaurant in the city.  I've been to the one on Davie that people told me was really good and really "authentic".  It may have been "authentic" but good seemed to be a bit of a stretch. 

Now, of course I'm comparing this to some of the Mexican food that I've had in Southern California, particularly San Francisco.  Does Vancouver have a Mexican restaurant that is truly good and authentic and spicy and flavourful?

Maybe this could be our next challenge. 

"Go forth and find good Mole!"

"Seek and ye shall be rewarded with sweet Tamale"   :raz:

Hi all:

Please forgive my newbie errors in posting -- it's been a while since I've been part of such an on-line community. This is in fact my first post on eGullet. I've been lurking intensely since I joined, catching up on some great threads/topics like this one. Anyway, thought I'd jump in and ask if anyone has tried Zocalo on Main. I couldn't find any references to it in the obvious forums. I've been twice, once for brunch as a walk in on the weekend and later with an early reso on a Friday for dinner. All dishes passed muster (and then some in certain cases -- details to follow if anyone's interested), the ambiance was good, the room inviting (kind of a Toronto/Queen West vibe). Size of dishes and price were inversely proportionate I thought, so pretty decent value. We ordered one too many dishes after going for the appetizers as dinner approach. Service on the Friday was a bit odd but I was feeling forgiving since I got a call back from the owner herself when I called to inquire about when the live music started as I was meeting friends with whom I wished to converse! Service at brunch was exemplary.

Edited by grayelf (log)
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Glad to be here, thanks. Being unaware of the eGullet phenomena, I did not take notes but from memory:

Brunch for me was chilaquiles, a personal favourite that I've not often found outside Mexico. They vary but these ones were day old tortilla strips deep fried and served with tomatillo sauce, a creditable queso fresco knockoff and some crema. They came with tasty refritos and the Zocalo take on home fries which are crispy good, probably deep fried. I love anything deep fried -- sand, paper, you name it, so I was a fan. The SE (Significant Engineer) had the Zocalo version of the classic brekky: 2 eggs any style with a side o' meat'n'spuds, oh and beans of course. The meat was a pleasing hunk of chorizo instead of the usual suspects. All disappeared rapidly with smacks of appreciation. Both were decent sized plates, not humongous but plenty filling and priced reasonably (under $10 as I recall).

For dinner, as mentioned we went for several appetizers rather than for mains. One of us was veggie, so we decided to order our own items rather than sharing which was kinda goofy in retrospect. Anyhoo, we had two spinach salads (not very Mexican but well executed according to my fellow diners), three orders of the bean taquitos (again well executed, if a tad squidgy -- I blame the beans) served with a small side of mixed greens, two orders of the chicken taquitos (just what a chicken taquito should be, moist but NOT squidgy inside, with full on crunch outside), also with greens. Sauces were chipotle or adobo (my bad) and guacamole, both tasty atop their respective taquitos. Our veg friend went for a ceviche which she was pleased with but not prescient enough to provide a detailed review to help this eGullet post :-). The last item I ordered was the only potato plate, similar to the patatas bravas at La Bodega but IMHO much better. Again with the goodness of deep frying, they were many and the sauce was good. Had to commandeer pals to help try to finish them but alas we were too full.

Beverages were beers for dining buddies and a house cocktail that was very tasty but whose contents escape me at the moment. They do have daily specials on particular bevvies and the prices seemed reasonable alcohol-wise. The odd service I mentioned went something like this: waitron gives us menus, wanders off, comes back moments later for drink order, then returns to confirm drink order, brings beers, comes back with cocktail but as she is about to serve it, bolts back to the kitchen and exchanges it for a different cocktail, takes food order without writing anything down (house rule?), then returns to confirm food order, and so on. So a bit vague but we got everything and it was all hot or cold as appropriate so no harm done. We skedaddled just as the band was setting up so can't report on the live entertainment except to say it starts at about 8 pm on Fri and Sat.

Pricewise, I think we paid around $80 for the three of us for 3 drinks and 3 apps each, which seemed reasonable given the quality and quantity of goods received. I think a return trip to sample a wider array of both starters and mains is in order. They also have a tres leches cake for dessert that requires testing.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Sweet. That is very close to me. I'll give it a try next week and report back.

Hey Waylman!

Did you get a chance to swing by Zocalo yet? Need more data...

(FWIW the Parental Units took a twenty-something acquaintance there midweek for a celebratory dinner at my suggestion. They didn't take detailed notes alas but liked the room and thought the food was adequate although Mum was not super impressed with her mole. She is a tougher crowd even than me though :rolleyes: The young friend loved it all, apparently.)

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  • 1 month later...

Maybe not quite on topic but Cobre (52 Powell) offers so-called nuevo Latino food, much of which is riffing on Mexican. We had two orders each of the pulled duck, fish, chorizo and poblano tacos, 2 orders of chicken taquitos, 2 orders of skirt steak, 1 order of short ribs, 1 goat cheese and eggplant empanada, 1 cheese pupusa, 1 tomato soup, one special of short ribs, all three desserts on offer and five beverages for $300, tax and tip in. Did I mention there were six of us? :laugh:

Everything was tasty, with the standouts being the tacos and the skirt steak (which they call vaca frita, a bit literally IMHO). The flavours in each dish were well delineated and nothing was over or undercooked or seasoned. The one minor disappointment was the short rib special which was a little tough and a mite oversauced but it still wasn't bad, just not in league with the other dishes. Each of us had a different favourite among the desserts which were a baked chocolate, dulce de leche and horchata creme brulee. The menu is designed for sharing, and the waiter suggested doubling up on the tacos because there are three per order which was good. Service in general was solid, and the room is inviting (I think the upper loft area is the nicest of the three levels). The website is helpful and the menu gives more details about specific ingredients if you're interested. I would recommend this as a relaxed place for a reasonably priced dinner, or a snack with drinks (they have a whole range of Latin-inspired libations such as the pisco sour I enjoyed).

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