El Catrin

Our first time at El Catrin, a new Mexican place in the Distillery.

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It’s a beautifully decorated space, but ultimately I’m there for good food not good décor.

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Brunch menu:

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We ordered guacamole prepared tableside. It seemed like every table was ordering this. The guy who came over to prepare it really didn’t say much of anything about it. The ingredients were already prepped and in the bowl. He just carried the bowl and stirred it up. You couldn’t really see what was in it since he was standing there holding it while we were sitting. At least lay it on the table so we can see it! The guac itself was so-so, very chunky and very plain. I liked how it was not overpowered with lime like some other places I’ve been to (I think other places do that because they make it ahead of time and try to keep it from browning).

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Three salsas, from mild to spicy.

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I was dying to try the chilaquiles — Tortilla chips sautéed with salsa verde, pulled chicken, queso fresco, cilantro, red onion and crema fresca. I first had chilaquiles in New Mexico and loved them. I’ve dreamt about them ever since. I have never found them on a menu again, until now. I asked if they could do shrimp chilaquiles instead of chicken chilaquiles, and they said yes, for an extra $7. Pretty ridiculous surcharge for a $14 dish but I said OK.

When the food came, it was not what I had imagined at all. I remembered chilaquiles as being like a Mexican lasagna or casserole, layered with tortillas and very cheesy and saucy. This was nothing more than chips and a few shrimps. Where I come from that’s called nachos. And the serving was so small. Very disappointed and felt ripped off! Definitely do not recommend this dish.

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Husband ordered the Chicken Tinga tacos: Pulled chicken chipotle stew, sautéed onions, tomato, black bean puree, crema fresca and corn tortilla to make your own taco. Yes so apparently you have to assemble them yourself. He liked these very much and said he thought he ordered the best thing on the menu. He insisted I try one of them since I did not like what I had ordered. It was okay. Again, the serving is very small.

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Dessert menu:

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We had the Tres Leches Cake w/ sweet crispy corn crumble. It was delicious! It came with some popcorn. I love the combination of sweet and savory. This also was a small portion.

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Our server was nice and friendly and we got in and out pretty quickly. All in all I prefer Playa Cabana for deliciousness and value.

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Web: http://elcatrin.ca/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/elcatrinca and sous chef https://twitter.com/jasonsheardown

Instagram: http://instagram.com/elcatrinca and http://instagram.com/jasonsheardown

El Catrin Destileria on Urbanspoon

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