1622 Commercial Dr, Vancouver BC V5L 3Y4
I’ve always been a big tequila drinker and I tried my first mezcal in Mexico in 2014 and loved it too (think smoky, like the whisky of tequila). But mezcal in general is the main umbrella of spirits that are made from agave. Tequila is specifically from blue agave (and a subcategory of mezcal). Though not everyone is a fan of tequila (most people I know dislike it), I subscribe entirely to the message on the cute illuminated sign: es verdad!
So given that we are at La Mezcaleria, which means a mezcal shop or store, mezcal drinks were a must. I ordered La Piñata, a pineapple-serano base with a chili rim. My partner ordered a classic Paloma, made with grapefruit Jarritos. My cocktail was quite sweet and had some heat to it, the rim was a nice contrast to the pineapple. The Paloma was on the tart side, a bit carbonated and definitely not lacking in tequila – they were generous and didn’t skimp on the liquor. Overall, they were good cocktails and tasty to have with some tacos.
We started with some ceviche and chips, which was quite fresh and flavourful though quite tomato heavy. It reminded me a little bit of chunky pico de gallo but with some pieces of fresh white fish. The tortilla chips were really amazing – thick and deep fried, made in-house.
We were also provided with a selection of salsas (sauces) which varied in spice level. The deeper green was the spiciest, the pineapple had a bit of sweet and heat, and the last salsa was a lighter green one with a smoky flavor and the least spicy. I love any place that gives me a selection of sauces for my dipping, dripping, and spreading pleasure. Our server was kind enough to give an overview of all three, and also made recommendations for tacos.
We ordered a bunch of tacos, which came in 6″ tortilla sizes. We tried the carne asada (grilled steak), camaron (prawn), pulpo (octopus), and chorizo (didn’t photograph).
The carne asada was delicious – the steak was tender and flavourful, it was also a big portion of meat on the tortilla so you’re not missing meat on any bite.
The camaron was my favourite – it just had such good flavour with a garlic chili oil. The melted cheese lining the tortilla helped to keep the oil and flavor inside the taco without seeping through it.
The pulpo taco was also super delicious, and a close second to the camaron. The octopus was so tender and light, grilled with tons of flavor and in a pepper chili oil. The crema and avocado mousse combo made the taco really rich and savory, a contrast to the spice of the oil.
The last chorizo taco was an additional order and my least favorite as it just reminded me of ground pork however it was still tasty.
I love La Mez and always enjoy their food and drinks. The tacos are some of the best in the city because they are so flavourful and authentic. When I go there in a bigger group, I always try to convince everyone to share a queso fundido, which is a giant molten bowl of cheese, what they’re known for. We didn’t order it time around but all the more reason to go back.
- La Piñata $13
- Paloma $13
- Ceviche Fresco & Chips $13
- Taco, De Carne Asada $8
- Taco, Pulpo de Ajillo $9
- Taco, Camaron $9
Beats: Tequila Sunrise – Cypress Hill