‘Poor Mexico, so far from God and so near to the United States,’ was how President Diaz summed up his country’s plight in the 19th century. But with margaritas, tacos, burritos, nachos, enchiladas, tortillas and some excellent beers to distract them, the Mexicans seem to have found as good a way as any to cope with their situation. Clare Lawler highlights where to ﬁnd some of the best Mexican food in Glasgow and Edinburgh.
I Ganglia del Rey Kings Court, 552 4044. This new arrival is a welcome addition to the somewhat limited range of Mexican restaurants in Glasgow. Backed by a series of rave newspaper reviews. Cantina del Rey fills the gap with a combination of tasty food and good service. The free samples of Salsa Mexicana and margarita and the gringo-friendly menu bear witness to the staff's eagerness to please. If you‘ve never tried Mexican food before this is a good place to start. Excellent value. vegetarian options.
I Cottier’s 93—95 Hyndland Street. 357 5827. Upstairs at Cottier's is an intimate and relaxed restaurant where you can sample their well thought-out South—west American-style Mexican dishes. The menu is interesting. and caters for all tastes. Recommended dishes include chargrilled chicken marinated in citrus fruits and spices; one of a series of exclusive main courses on offer. The restaurant is complemented by a lively downstairs cafe-bar with free evening gigs; alternatively the restaurant's late night supper club combines specially priced. traditional Mexican food with mellow jazz entertainment.
I Lupe Pintos Mexican Dell 24 Leven
Street. 228 6241. Edinburgh‘s only Mexican deli - perhaps the only one in Scotland — and it‘s got a liquor licence too. Everything you need to make your own Mexican meal is at hand: a wide range of flours. beans. flavoursome and unusual spices and chillis. as well as experienced staff who are always willing to give advice. Also stocks a selection of home-made prc-cooked meals and a vast selection of specially
imported Mexican beers. mescals and tequila not to be found elsewhere.
I Miro 184 Rose Street. 225 4376. Small and intimate. The freshly prepared authentic Mexican dishes are miles away from the faddish interpretations of the cuisine. Look out for the house speciality. Pollo En Mole Poblano — chicken in spicy sauce. flavoured with chocolate — and home- made sweets including Buncellos. a delightful concoction of sweet tortillas. bananas. pineapple and cream. Wash it down with some l()()-year-old tequilla. The lunch menu includes tapas and open tortas.
I Pancho Villas 240 Canongate. 557 4416. Over the years Pancho Villas' Latin American chefs have established a reputation for traditional Mexican cuisine carefully adapted to suit wider tastes. The time and effort spent on the food shows. The three-course lunch is
excellent value at £4.95 and comes with
vegetarian options: or altematively chill out. day and night, over a beer with a selection of highly recommended botanas. Mexican-style tapas.
I Tex Mex 47 Hanover Street. 225 1796. This spacious and colourful Mexican is an enjoyable restaurant in which to sample tex mex food; a fiery hybrid. mostly Mexican but drawing on ingredients and influences from Texas and California. Tex Mex have developed a menu that exploits the many styles. colours and varieties of food to create dishes that are tasty and immensely popular. Fill your boots at lunch. dinner and cowboy-style Sunday brunch on a range of dishes from flaming fajitas to home-made Kalhua and chocolate iceeream.
I Viva Mexico 10 Anchor Close. 226 5145 and 5() East Fountainbridge. 228 4005. Since it opened eight-and—a-half years ago, Viva Mexico has gathered a loyal clientele for its attractive menu of unique and individual dishes. This is the real thing. From the imported wines and authentic cooking as served in Mexican homes. down to the decor - the Anchor Close bar is a replica of one outside Mexico City. Drinks include negro modelo (a dark beer) and a variety of mescals and tequillas. And if you ask nicely they’ll give you their recipe for fresh margaritas. Long after the fashionable tapas joints have disappeared. this place will still be here.
FOR THE BEST IN HOME COOIQED MEXICAN CUISINE
3 GROVE STREET
LUNCH - 12-2.30pm EVENINGS — 6—11pm (last orders 10.30pm)
10,.anchor close, Cockburn street EDINBURGH 226 5145 50, east fountalnbridgo EDINBURGH 228 4005]
184 Rpse Street ’Ezﬁnburgfi 031.225 43 76
76 The List l2 —25 March 1993