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French-influenced Mexican cuisine from chef Carlos Gaytan.

Our Review

Imagine the intensity of native Mexican ingredients, finessed with French exuberance, and you have an idea of what you can expect at Mexique. Case in point: pescamal, a seafood mousse tamal cooked in banana leaf and stuffed with crabmeat fricassee, the smooth tastes of cornmeal and crab sharpened and brought into focus with lemon confit. A trio of sopes combines escargots and chimichurri butter, avocado mousse and shrimp Provencal, and sweet plantains with coconut and xico mole, harmonizing Native American and continental European accents. Chef Carlos Gaytan presents finely balanced flavors: pato al tamarindo is duck breast and rich leg confit in a slightly sour tamarind glaze, paired with Swiss chard that supplies a bitter note; the herb-crusted rack of lamb, lush and perfectly cooked, gets a counterpoint from delicately astringent sweet and spicy eggplant. Classic cochinita pibil is moist and luxuriant, perked up with piquant pickled onion, or you can have it Frenchified as rillettes, finely minced, almost spreadable meat, a beautiful example of Franco-Mexican fusion. All dishes show sensitive uses of chile heat, with condiments like mango-habanero coulis and garlic-mulato chile essence. For dessert, an avocado pastry cream with crispy tortilla is another successful cross-cultural creation.

David Hammond

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Price: $$$
Payment Type: American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

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