That Little Mexican Place
Since being back from Singapore and having tried a few new cuisines back home, my aim back in Perth was to explore new cuisines. Mexican was on the list but I did not know of many restaurants that served mexican food. Most of those that I knew served the usual nachos and cheese and heaps of food with cheese. I was not keen on nachos, and really wanted something different with not that much cheese. (Just not to be mistaken, I am alright with cheese, I just don’t like in excess)
Mos and I set out to look for a new Mexican restaurant, and Mos was recommended That Little Mexican Place. So along with Will, Leo and Xh, we went after church. Upon arriving, the place looked pretty small, and most tables were occupied so I was wondering (since I made a reservation) where will we be sitting. The waiter was very friendly, and even “fooled” me into believing they did not get my reservation before leading me inside to another door which had more tables.
The menu provided the mexican names of most dishes with a very detailed description of each dish. Excellent work, as it gives you an idea of what you are ordering rather than being surprised at what comes out later on. A wide variety on the menu, and only a few that really had cheese in them.
We decided to order: Gaucamole a la mesa, Taco de carnitas pequeno, Albondigas, Chimichanga de nopales, Burrito de pescado a la veracruzana, Tamal de frijol negro, Chile en nogada. And for drinks: Agua frescas and horchata.
Agua Frescas (“fresh (flavoured) waters”) are apparently sold from street vendors throughout mexico. Today’s flavours were Hibiscus and Strawberry. The drinks are non-gassy, and accompanied with a fruity flavour. The hibiscus flavoured water have this fresh, thirst quenching flavour to it, and it is not overly sweet nor overly fragrant. The strawberry flavoured water was on the other hand a little overly sweet.
Horchata is a rice drink, made from ground rice, cinnamon, almonds and lime zest. This drink carries a unique taste and you either like it or hate it. I am not a big fan of it but Mos loves it. I have had korean rice milk and it tastes pretty similar to it. It has a malty taste, and a little sweet. It doesn’t exactly have a smooth texture so you kind of find the texture of the drink a bit grainy.
Guacamole a la mesa: guacamole made fresh at your table. served with house made tortilla chips. The guacamole is made from avocado, chopped up tomato, onions, coriander, lemon and salt. The dip was so yum and of course very fresh. It has a creamy texture and the added tomatoes and squeeze of lemon made it very appetizing. The chips were salty (so you need not add too much salt in the dip). the dip accompanied the chips really well, and even when the chips were all gone, we were still eating up the dip on its own. For those who love avocados, definitely will love this dip.
Taco de carnitas pequeno: small house made tortilla with shredded pork and salsa verde. This dish contains mouthful of flavours, with sweet, sour, spicy and salty. Salty from the pork, sweet, sour and spicy from the salsa. Different flavours that blended well together. A great way to start off dinner.
Albondigas: mexican meatballs served simmering in grilled tomato and chipotle salsa. The meatballs were really tasty and soft. The flavour of the salsa is similar of that to the flavour of chilli con carne, without the spice, but rich in tomato. Every mouthful of meatball was accompanied by lots of sauce, and we were even finishing every last drop of salsa there was on the plate.
Chimichanga de nopales: sauted cactus, mushroom and chayote squash, rolled into a flour tortilla with mexican rice and beans, then baked. This reminded me of eating a typed of chinese preserved vegetable called sichuan vegetable or zha cai except this was not spicy. Crunchy and smooth texture, and the taste is similar to sauerkraut (pickled, slightly sour and salty). The tortilla was soft and moist (not the dry texture u sometimes get).
Burrito de pescado a la veracruzana: snapper cooked in a spicy tomato and chilli based sauce with olives with black beans. rolled into a flour tortilla. served with mexican rice and beans and salad. Fish was very fresh, and had no fishy smell. I dislike olives, but with this dish, I could not even taste the olives (YAY! for me). Even though it says it was cooked in a spicy tomato and chilli based sauce, the spiciness was very mild, enough for you to taste it, and yet not be gulping down water after that. It was one of the favourites for the night.
Tamal de frijol negro: steamed bread made from corn masa, stuffed with black beans, and topped with salsa veracruzana. vegetarian. served with rice and beans and salad. The table was split with this dish. Me and XH did not like the flavour of the dish, Mos and Leo likes it, Will is alright with the flavour but did not enjoy the texture. It was like a mouthful of flowery fragrance, or to XH feels like eating perfume. I was steering clear from this dish. The texture was grainy (since it was made of masa (cornmeal), which Will did not like. Leo love the flavour of it, said it was something that was frequently eaten back in China.
Chile en nogada: poblano chile stuffed with pork, tomato, apple, peach and pear. served with a sauce made from walnuts and sour cream. This is a very traditional dish originally designed to look like the mexican flag. Ok, the dish did not come out looking like that though. The flavour of the dish was mixture of sweet and savoury flavours blended together. Lots of textures in the dish as well, with tough textures from the meat, to soft textures from the fruits. The sauce was probably the highlight of this dish as it was very tasty and each spoonful had to be accompanied the sauce.
The waiter that was attending us the whole night was fantastic. He came to check to make sure we were fine with our dishes. When we were placing our order, he did mention a couple of them that we may not be used to as we had not come across them before.
This is my first mexican restaurant and I enjoyed myself. It definitely left a good impression on mexican food and I will be looking forward for others.
Note: I did not bring any wine, though there is a $4 corkage fee per head.
Overall rating: Above average.
Will I recommend this restaurant: Yes.