The distinctive purple neon skull sign distinguishes this cool Latin spot in the area where Gastown meets Railtown meets Japantown.
Its google description "latin american small plates, creative entrees and cocktails in arty, industrial-chic surrounds" is completely on point.
It has a chill/dark ambience characteristic of many Gastown lounges, with unique fixtures, a rustic brick wall and a bar. Skull motifs and latin music (not overly blaring) definitely enhanced its funky vibe.
- Make an online reservation (it was packed on Saturday night with a huge seated group as well as many diners in smaller groups)
- They generally do features on Fridays/Saturdays
- Serving sizes tend to veer on the smaller side, please take note if you're coming here on an empty stomach
Our waiter very patiently and animatedly explained the top chef recommendations: Lois Lake Steelhead Trout Ceviche Cornbread ("starts with chilli butter which melts"), Turmeric Fried Cauliflower ("most popular dish"), BC Angus Steak Bavette Asado, Pan Roasted BC Sablefish & Szechuan Peppercorn Rockfish, just to rattle off a few.
I was impressed with the Turmeric Fried Cauliflower (Almond Date Butter, Tomato Ginger Jam) taco made all my vegetarian dreams *come true*! For anyone looking to sample vegetarian food, I recommend this as it proves that it is not necessarily bland! It's all about how you fuse ingredients. This was flavourful and tangy, and a real contender here.
My parents really enjoyed the Szechuan Peppercorn Rockfish (Kimchi Cascabel Y Lemon Mayo), mentioning that it was just the right level of spice, and not overpowering.
Also delicious was the Pan Roasted BC Sablefish (Coconut Cream Corn, Black Garlic Puree, Butter Browned Pana Fritas), consisting of interesting ingredients blended together in perfect harmony.
Last but definitely not least, the crowning glory of the evening - dulce de leche (Tamarind butterscotch, caramelized pineapple Y honeycomb, ancho chilli dusted churros). Incorporating berries and pineapple helped to lessen the overall sweetness and balance out the heaviness of the cream and churros. Overall, this was really indulgent, rich and heavy. Super guilty & sinful way to end off a meal, but definitely a unique way of incorporating a smorgasbord of various flavours.
For a tasty evening out with inventive Latin flavours that you would be hard pressed to find elsewhere, definitely check out this Gastown gem. There's also a bar and alcohol selection for those who want a night out on the town.