Fancy a little trip to South America? Short of actually going there you should check out Maldito Mendez.
The first visit was an early dinner after work one Tuesday, so no problem securing a table in the little courtyard just outside. It was a balmy summer evening & we were in the mood for some bubbles so a bottle of refreshing cava was the tipple of choice for the evening. To start some tortilla chips with guacamole, salsa & sour cream to tide us over until everyone arrived. Great guacamole & bright fresh salsa, we would just have like a little more.
We shared a few dishes for the main event. On the salad front it was a black bean, mango salad with chilli lime & coriander that was bright & zingy & just a nice hit of chilli heat. The crispy coconut chicken tacos were also a tasty treat, juicy & tender chicken with a golden crispy coating topped with chipotle may & on a fresh bed of spicy cabbage slaw with tamarind & pineapple for a little fresh & a little crunch. However, the star of the show was the Manuka smoked rib eye with the mandioca chips & the classic Argentinian chimichurri sauce with parsley, garlic, oregano, olive oil & wine vinegar. The mandioca chips were crisp & golden & ever so moreish & the chimichurri was sharp & tangy, perfect with the rib eye.
We did order dessert, 2 dessert! But our eyes were definitely bigger than our bellies! We couldn’t quite finish the churros, even though they were light & quite heavenly dunked in the spiced hot chocolate. Our Argentinian diner couldn’t go past the alfjor, an Argentinian dulce du leche cookie. The verdict; good but it needed more dulce du leche. Then again it’s probable that we’d always like more dulce du leche.
For my next visit it was lunch & a hibiscus tea to sip on which was sweet but not too sweet & a refreshing & zesty tipple on a hot sunny day. The black bean mango salad with chilli lime & coriander made an encore appearance & was just as good the second time round.
On the taco side of things it was fish this time & they were so good! Lightly crumbed perfectly cooked fish trumped the crispy coconut chicken tacos. What made the even better was the addition of pomegranate & tomatillo for a little burst of tart & tang. On any future visits it will be hard to go past these little beauties. Another standout was the lamb birria, an ever so flavourful lamb stew with roasted red peppers served with red rice, flour tortilla, sour cream & pickled red onions.
No dessert this time but another delicious meal at Maldito Mendez. It’s a friendly little joint & I will definitely be back for more.
4 Brown Street
Open 7 days 12-late
Phone: 09 378 9107