When it comes to Mexican Food, I'm fond of quoting a scene from Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations.
Mr Bourdain took his friend, the Chief Chef at Les Halle in Manhattan to visit his mother in Mexico. She had them over for a "Traditional Mexican Dinner" and there was one comment that this Abuelita made that sticks with me. I'll paraphrase it. She said that she loved the fact that she could come to the United States and get good Mexican food but "It's too Spicy Up There".
Mexican Food has a rich heritage. There are distinct regional specialties. The food that the Abuelita was used to eating and making in Manzanillo will be quite different than that in Mexico City for example. What we are used to in the United States is Tex Mex. Tex Mex has it's own charm but I've found I really don't care for the heat either.
I prefer Savory and that is what Pinche Taqueria has been making since they opened. I'll leave that Five Alarm Chili to the rest of you, I came to the conclusion that Food Shouldn't Hurt.
When I go to a Mexican restaurant, for me it is usually Pork. Specifically Carnitas, which is a savory mix of slow cooked Pork and spices. Served on a flour tortilla open faced with some onion and perhaps cilantro, the salsa will be on the side. Mild for me, Spicy for everyone else I guess.
I first went to Pinche Taqueria on Wilton Drive across from City Hall before the Official Opening and a few times after that. I found that their Carnitas had the right spices, but was a wee bit on the dry side.
All that has changed. They now have a new head chef, and he knows what he's doing with my Pork!
The spice mix is still what I expect in my Carnitas, but there was a change in the preparation. It was moist. Before it was indifferently overcooked, now it was simply wonderful.
The new head chef was the person who led the kitchen at the nearby Alibi for the last couple years. Under his guidance, Alibi bar has won the Best Burger in Broward competition. I can vouch for that burger as well, it is excellent.
Now at Pinche Taqueria, his creativity and strength shows through. There's a new menu, and a new technique at making the food. It's done quite well and I'll absolutely go back. Their Fish Tacos were great before, and I'm looking forward to see what he's done with them. They were moist and tasty before, but I can only expect them to be better.
The reviews on Yelp certainly show the change. People were not coming back and changing the chief Chef absolutely had an effect. The Chips are crisp, the Portions are larger, the food better prepared.
Oh one last one thing - if you do go there, have the Mojito. Unlike everywhere else I have had a Mojito, this was sweet but not syrupy. You can actually taste the flavors of all the ingredients instead of feeling like you are drinking flavored corn syrup. If there is a drinks competition, their Mojito wins, at least with me.