When I walked into Mexicano, I was greeted by big sombrero hats hanging off the wall right at the entrance, next to the flashing “MEXICANO” sign. Of course, the sign had a stereotypical man with a sombrero hat on and a mustache, just to give the place the right Mexican vibes.
I made my way into the restaurant following the smell of spices and the sizzle of the grill. The first thing I noticed was a wagon with a bunch of lovely avocados wrapped in cling film and a clay mortar, which they call the “live station.” Now, the name “live station” is already quite self-explanatory, meaning that they guac in front of you. They throw in a few avocados into the clay mortar, season with chopped onions, tomatoes, cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper, and they let you taste it with a piece of corn tortilla. You can let them know if you want it spicier, saltier or more sour – your guacamole wish is their command! They don’t call it “Rock the Guac” on the menu (350B) for no reason!
I was welcomed by two different types of margarita: the classic margarita and a strawberry margarita. For non-alcohol lovers, you can ask them to make your virgin margaritas to freshen up your palate without the chance of turning the evening into an evening you won’t remember!
What I admired about Mexicano was their open kitchen. I personally enjoy watching people cook and put their passion into the dishes, which Chef Carlos most certainly does. Chef Carlos has been cooking up his magic at Mexicano for 3.5 years and here are the 3 tantalizing dishes plus+ 1 dessert recommended by the Chef:
Aguachile de Mariscos
The first dish was the “Aguachile de Mariscos” (350B): a selected seafood mix with fresh chili, coriander, onion, and garlic. There were fresh fish, prawns, and squid, cooked in lime juice mixed with “aqua” and “chile”. The sauce had the perfect balance of sourness from the lime juice and spiciness from the chili. I couldn’t stop slurping! This dish was served in a glass bowl on top of crushed ice to keep everything nice and fresh, especially the fresh seafood. I was told by the humble chef that this dish is very popular in the north of Mexico where it’s hot. Eat it with a cold local beer and it will turn your world upside down.
Tacos de Milanesa de la Calle
The second dish was “Tacos de Milanesa de la Calle” (375B): breaded beef striploin fajitas with shredded fried potatoes, white onions, and avocado. This is the kind of local street food dish where you can get anywhere on the streets in Mexico. You can get it with either pork or beef, topped with shredded fried potatoes, white onions, and avocado. The chef didn’t stop there – he kept on blowing me away with the fresh sauces made from jalapeno, habanero, dried chipotle, and green tomatoes. What’s the difference between red tomatoes and green tomatoes, you ask (I asked)? Green tomatoes are different in the acidity and sourness and has no tomato flavor, which makes it easier to play around with the flavors.
Lamb Chops con Mole Poblano
The last savory dish was the “Lamb Chops con Mole Poblano” (765B): New Zealand lamb chops with mole poblano spices with fried bananas. You read it right – “fried bananas” with peanuts, garlic, and coriander. Brace yourself, because the sauce is made from…dark chocolate, 7 different chilies, cumin, cinnamon, pumpkin seeds, prunes, etc. When he told me we were having lamb chops with dark chocolate sauce and fried bananas, I had so many question marks pop up in my head just like you do right now reading this, but when I tasted the whole thing together, I understood it. It worked! The savory chocolate sauce which tasted a little bit like Mexican curry, a little piece of tender lamb chop and garlic-y fried banana created such an intense and new flavor in my mouth.
I ended the evening with homemade “Churros” (150B): deep-fried flour dumplings served with hot chocolate sauce and vanilla ice cream. You know what they say: “The meal isn’t over until something sweet hits the tongue!” Chef Carlos said that Thailand doesn’t offer the same flour as Mexico, so the crispiness of the churros here will never be the same as in his hometown, but I appreciated the homemade taste of these little deep-fried dumplings, made with tender, love and care.
I didn’t expect to appreciate all the dishes, especially the lamb chops with chocolate sauce, but I la-la-la-loved everything! If you’re looking for authentic Mexican food in Bangkok, Mexicano at Rembrandt hotel in Sukhumvit 18 is the place to be. Don’t forget to grab your best gal pals and put on your dancing shoes if you feel like getting your groove on, because the live band “Tumbao No. 1” will make you want to boogie on the dance floor!
Check them out from 7pm to 12am every night except Tuesdays. And if you’re REALLY into Mexican food and want to have a feast, head over for their “Mexican Saturday Buffet Brunch” from 12pm to 3pm for only 800 THB NET. You get a salad corner, appetizers, unlimited guacamole, tacos, fajitas, and a live station to make quesadillas and tacos! Don’t forget to say hi to Chef Carlos and do a tequila shot with him!
Rembrandt Hotel Bangkok
Hours of Operation:
– Dinner from 17:00 to Midnight
– Every Saturday Brunch from 12:00 to 15:00h
Reservations: +66 02 261 7100