It’s a hot Wednesday afternoon – so hot, we figured even spicy Mexican food wouldn’t make a difference. Good thing we decided to drop in at lunch! It’s a mission to get a table after 5 at both the Takapuna and Britomart branch. If you’ve been to (or attempted to) Mexico, you’ll know that Mexico doesn’t take bookings – much like Depot.
If you haven’t noticed from the name yet, this is definitely a themed restaurant. Everything has that slight Central-South American taste to it, but at the same time it’s mixed with the casual Kiwi feel without giving in too much.
Taco – Beef brisket braised in coconut & ancho w green onion, chilli, papaya
It doesn’t look very big, and it’s not. When I first saw this and being a bit of a carnivore, I thought “I wonder how much meat is in there…”. To my surprise, it was actually quite heavy. The taste turned out to be quite meaty, accompanied by very subtle flavours of the onion, chilli, and papaya – too bad I couldn’t get the scent of the coconut. It’s probably one of the few things on the menu that gives a good value for price – $6.
Mexico’s fried chicken w jalapeño mayo and chipotle mayo
This dish gave me the biggest surprise. Having being told that Mexico offers more tapas style dishes already, for $12 I was expecting a bigger dish. But don’t let the price or the size fool you, the fried chicken with the jalapeno mayo is to die for! It really shows you difference that you would get between this and KFC. The chicken wasn’t overly greasy or salty. The only downside was the price.
Quesadilla – Prawn, smoked paprika, chilli & orange w corn salsa
Now this was an impressive dish that gave both value and taste. I was interested to see how prawn would be played out in this, and as I expected, the prawn was chopped rather than having whole prawns splayed out. The one thing I would’ve liked – more chilli! But then again, I’m quite into my spicy and hot stuff. The corn salsa was a perfect match – especially when the quesadilla got slightly dry as you conquered the dish. For $12 I would say it’s pretty good as well.
So there’s a quick lunch at the famous Mexico. It is definitely hard to find a table at night, but lunch is always perfect. And for the guys, if you prefer heavy portions for dinner, Mexico might not be for you – but for lunch it’s quite worth it. It’s a different place to talk, have a drink and eat. We’ll be back for the drinks!
Mexico – Takapuna
4 The Strand (McKenzies)
Takapuna, North Shore