Corn Chips with Guacamole and Salsa $5
We ordered at the bar and received a table number stand in the form of a ludicrous giant wooden cactus; food arrived swiftly and we share a box of the corn chips with guacamole and salsa - fat, crunchy chips perfect for dipping into the luscious guacamole and a mild tomato salsa packed with herbs. So moreish and I just couldn't get enough of the guacamole.
Chorizo and Jalapeño Quesadillas $5
On the specials board was the chorizo and jalapeño quesadillas, thick slices of chorizo, pickled jalapeños and oozy melted cheese sandwiched between two toasted mini tortillas with some dippy chipotle sauce on the side. Deliciously fiery.
“Al Pastor” Pork “Torta” Sandwich $10
I realise that this is an incredibly subpar photo of the “al pastor” pork “torta” sandwich but I was too distracted by my quesadilla at this time to have taken it properly. It's marinated pork chunks from the spit grill with pico de gallo salsa blanketed by cabbage, coriander, spring onion and mayonnaise, tucked inside a sesame hamburger bun. Vern gave the thumbs up.
Al Pastor, Pollo, Carne Asada Tacos $5 each
Pork, chicken and beef (clockwise from the top), Sharon has her bases covered. The al pastor taco is spit roast pork and pineapple salsa, the pollo taco is chicken and sweet corn salsa, and the carne asada taco is lemongrass beef with salsa verde; all include cabbage, spring onions and coriander. We watched Sharon spill taco innards all through dinner, but she enjoyed it despite making a mess of herself and the table.
Camaron, Secret Taco $5 each
My choices were the camaron taco containing prawn, salsa verde and pico de gallo and the secret taco, a daily special with surprise ingredients notorious for its fondness for offal (previous fillings include intestine, chicken hearts, pig uterus, lamb tongue and brains). The prawns were plump, the coriander and cabbage refreshing and a far cry from the cliched Tex-Mex flavours we've become accustomed to. I think the secret taco that night might've been some sort of battered fish, I had no clue and forgot to ask but it was delicious, topped with sweet corn, tangy dressing (chipotle, I think) and two pieces of chilli.
Classic Margarita $13.50
It ain't Mexican without margaritas, I opt for the classic but there's a small but varied selection here (jalapeño, celery and avocado, beetroot). It's Herradura Blanco Tequila and Cointreau shaken with lime juice and sugar and served into a plastic cup with a salted rim; there's just something special about a lime+tequila+salt combination that tastes like love.
Excelsior Hot Dog $9
I went back within the same week. This time at a much quieter hour for a late lunch, my choice is the Excelsior hot hog. Finely shredded queso fresco cheese smother a grilled pork Frankfurt, held in place by a generous squiggles of mayonnaise and mustard, inside the soft bun you will find pickled jalapeños and pico de gallo lining the bottom. This dawg is a creamy, tangy, delicious mess.
El Loco Salad $12
Another victim of the "watching what I eat" logic, Joseph orders the El Loco salad and I smugly note the deep-fried slivered tortilla chips and blizzard of grated cheese adorning his otherwise healthy veggie pile. The salad is rather unusual with Asian influences, compromised of chilli spiced tofu, avocado, shredded cabbage, shaved fennel and radish, coriander, spring onions and a dressing that reminded me of Chinese sweet sauce. Strangely addictive.
64 Foveaux St, Surry Hills 2010
Telephone: (02) 9211 4945