Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Oh So Tasty: Meso Maya

Last week, I was invited to check out the newest location of Meso Maya.  This Preston Hollow concept has just opened a second location adjacent to the well-known and loved El Fenix restaurant, incorporating the 1938 landmark Luna Tortilla Factory building, conveniently located across the street from the Perot Museum and one block from the Klyde Warren Park. You follow that?

Mike Karns acquired the historic Luna Tortilla Factory building three years ago and applied to Dallas’ Landmark Commission for permission to restore the site, one of the sole remaining buildings in the original Little Mexico, while promising to maintain the historic integrity of the building. The outdoor patio at Meso Maya is the historic site of the first Mexican restaurant outdoor patio in Dallas.  “There is a new, exciting energy and connectivity in the city of Dallas," said Karns. "This downtown location across from the new Perot Museum and just a block from Klyde Warren Park, along with the history of the site is a unique, one-of-a-kind attraction with offerings from our three Mexican restaurant brands, El Fenix, Meso Maya and La Ventana."

(left) Chocolate Cake topped with Ice Cream (right) Ceviche with diced Shirmp, Striped Bass, Avacado, Tomato, Cilantro

According to the press release: The menu offers a culinary adventure into the fresh, bold and earthy flavors that are the heart and soul of Mayan and Mexican cuisine. The dishes are inspired by natural ingredients from Mexico including maize, cacao, chilies, agave, squash, chayote, nopales, plantains and regional rice. Chef Nico Sanchez and his talented team interpret the generations of culinary artistry of his home country with scratch moles, adobos, salsas, and house-ground hand-made tortillas.

Between me and my two dinner companions, we tried the Budin Azteca (a sort of Mexican Lasagna that I got with Shrimp), the Carne Asada and Cochinita Pibil (braised achiote pulled-pork - this entree was the standout). For dessert we shared the Chocolate Cake topped with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream (pictured above) and an apple bread pudding. Both desserts were amazing! My only complaint was that the acoustics in this place stink. We were sat in the main dining room and it was SO LOUD that I had to stare at my companions mouths to read their lips and understand what they were saying. The younger generation would say that the noise decibel makes it hip and cool. But since I am 40+ I just found it extremely annoying. I will go back... but I will request to be seated in another space or the patio to see if the noise level is any better.

The new Meso Maya at 1611 McKinney at Caroline Streets includes seating for 131 guests inside as well as an al fresco courtyard for 180 guests, perfect for dining or enjoying a signature Meso Maya margarita.

photos: Mesa Mayo's Facebook Page