Some friends and I headed to Cisco’s Restaurante Mexicano in Kingston after walking past it a few weeks ago. Seeing as there aren’t may Mexican food options in Canberra, it was a must try for blogging purposes. We were there for Sunday lunch where there was only one other table of diners in the establishment. The inside is decked out in kitsch Mexican prints, sombreros and a random mannequin wearing a poncho, mo and sombrero. We were thankful for the air conditioning since it was one of those 40 degree days.
The menu has items that should appeal to most people – nachos, chilli con carne, tacos, enchiladas, fajitas, chimichangas, burritos, wings and ribs. There are several vegetarian options and gluten free dishes cleared marked. I love the mini sombrero table number holders. So cute!
I chose the Mexican platter ($22) since I found it too hard to choose what dish to order. The platter provides three items – 1 enchilada, 1 tostada and 1 spicy meatball on Mexican rice. I got a choice of meat for the enchilada and I chose beef. I thought the enchilada was pretty basic and not that flavoursome. Similarly the meatball needed more herbs and spices. Though it was smothered in spicy tomato sauce, the sauce was sour and didn’t do much for me. The tostada was simple, covered in frijole (beans mix), lettuce, tomato and mayonnaise. I did like the crunchiness of the tostada which helped add another texture to the otherwise soft and mushy meal.
J ordered the full rack of hickory smoked pork baby back ribs ($24) – not exactly Mexican but he had a meaty appetite. The ribs came served with frijoles and Mexican rice. The BBQ sauce was thick, tangy and bursting with flavour. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much meat on the ribs so he was disappointed with that.
A friend ordered the small regular nachos ($12) from the appetisers menu as her main meal, but couldn’t finish it as it was a very large serving. There are a variety of nachos that can be ordered – plain, with frijoles, beef, or with both frijoles and beef.
One of my vegetarian friends ordered two vegetarian enchiladas ($19) with frijoles and Mexican rice. There is also an option of 1 enchilada. The vegetarian enchilada is stuffed with potato, pumpkin and cheese which sounded a lot tastier than my beef enchilada.
My other friend ordered the vegetarian burrito ($19) topped with lettuce, tomato and sour cream. I forgot to ask what was inside it but I’m assuming it would be similar to the vegetarian enchilada.
I’ve never had real Mexican food so I’m afraid I can’t really compare this to anything else besides Guzman and Gomez. Nevertheless, my food didn’t have much flavour or taste which hinders any willingness of going back soon. We were soon the only table of diners in the restaurant. Service was friendly and attentive enough during the time we sat down and ordered our meals and drinks, however it seemed to have dropped off after our plates were cleared. We waited for someone to ask about whether we wanted dessert, but no one came back over to see us. We finally caught the waiter’s attention to order dessert and more tap water.
I ordered the Mexican chocolate ice cream ($9) which looked a little like mousse but a lot more compact in a cone-shaped metal bowl. It was a strange texture – not quite like ice cream as it was too fluffy and didn’t hold together like ice cream, but not quite like mousse which is creamier. It was very chocolatey and rich, almost like a Cadbury Flake had been blitzed and mixed in, with a hint of cinnamon. I found the texture odd as it wasn’t like ice cream I’m used to. But that’s just me.
Overall, we had a pleasant lunch but the food did not impress me enough to go back in a hurry. The restaurant seems family friendly and there is a lot of choice for vegetarians and those with gluten allergies. There is also a one page tequila menu for the full Mexican eating and drinking experience.
Cisco’s Restaurante Mexicano is on Kennedy Street in Kingston. Look for the big heavy metal door. The menu can be found online on their website.
Value for money 6/10
FPJ score 16/30
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