Well kiddies, Shonuff just recently turned 35 and when Pusher asked where I wanted to have the birthday dinner I picked Boca Chica. This is Mexican food without messing around. Family recipes carefully made and full of flavor. Presented in a more of a fine dining style than most Mexican food you can get. They give you soup or a salad with most meals and the decor while still being Mexican themed is like you might find at a nice resort.
What about the food makes me love Boca Chica? Well, let me explain how I normally get a sense of a Mexican restaurant. I've got it down to sort of a science (I've gone to a lot of Mexican places). There are three things I check for... Tamales, Chile Rellenos, and Mole sauce. Now if a place has all three of these dishes it's a good sign... but there are times when some or all are bad. If two out of three are good to great then the place is good just a bit limited. So I'm betting you know how Boca Chica did.
Tamales... these appear to be a simple thing but aren't. If you don't like corn meal then of course you aren't going to like them but the proper balance between the corn meal and pork is very tricky. Boca Chica nails the balance and actually presents the tamale in the husk of corn... a presentation I've noticed is done most places you get a great tamale. Boca Chica Tamales = excellent.
Chile Rellenos also sound kind of simple, stuff pepper batter and fry. Well this is a dish I love but is often done poorly. Not a problem at Boca Chica, you taste the pepper, you taste the filling and they all meld together to make the wonderful flavors this dish can create. Another win for Boca Chica.
Then there is Mole sauce. This like the previous two dishes is fairly labor intensive. The sauce at it's best is cooked for hours so the flavors can meld. Boca Chica's is done right and it shows, it's easily in the top 5 I've ever had. Their sauce is strong on the cocoa flavor with that bitterness showing through even while it is balanced nicely by the rich roasted pepper flavors.
I think I might have to go back soon...
Melissa Clark's Excellent White Bread
3 weeks ago