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Best Latin in B-more?

b
bkath Mar 12, 2007 11:29 AM

Ended up at La Cazuela in FP Sat night when our usual haunt was SRO, it was really good (even though we didn't get what we ordered but the place was hopping), and nice vibe. Started us wondering, who else is serving up good Latin food around town? It seems like there are a lot of brightly lit luncheonette type places, we're looking more for sit-down, Saturday night kinda places (we almost never can get out other nights) with good food & (preferably) a liquor license or at least byo. A board search didn't turn up much recent info, so what gems have local CH'ers found lately?

  1. BmoreHound Mar 12, 2007 11:50 AM

    what would you include when you say "Latin"?

    1 Reply
    1. re: BmoreHound
      b
      bkath Mar 12, 2007 01:41 PM

      anywhere south of the us border.

    2. m
      MDicecreamguy Mar 12, 2007 05:33 PM

      Mari Luna in Pikesville.....not typical Mexican....more upscale. Order any of the specials....you won't be disappointed. It DOES get very crowded though!

      1 Reply
      1. re: MDicecreamguy
        b
        baltymoron Mar 20, 2007 09:02 AM

        Mari Luna is the best in the area- i've tried most of the Eastern Ave/Fells Pt places, and nothing touches Mari Luna. Arcos has great atmosphere- but the food is only average and overpriced. Mari Luna's atmosphere is not bad. I think the BYOB is a plus, as you get 6 good beers for $6, rather and 1 for $4- sounds good to me. No Margaritas though.

      2. ko1 Mar 12, 2007 06:08 PM

        La Cazuela is about as upscale as it gets when your talking Latino in B-more. There are lots of good holes-in-the-wall in Upper Fells Point, though. I like El Salvador for their fish stew.

        1. t
          travelbuff Mar 13, 2007 07:51 PM

          Arcos on Broadway is supposed to be really good, and not too casual.

          2 Replies
          1. re: travelbuff
            ko1 Mar 14, 2007 06:06 AM

            I haven't been in awhile, but I found the food at Arcos mediocre.

            1. re: travelbuff
              e
              elnicka Mar 14, 2007 12:24 PM

              Arcos has great Mole, Tamales, Tostadas and Soups. It is pretty casual and has a great outdoor back patio. Also try Carlos O'Charlies on Eastern Ave in Highlandtown. They have great, cheap, authentic food in a beautiful space.

            2. b
              bkath Mar 15, 2007 09:46 AM

              Thanks for the recs - I guess I have to say I'm not really looking for upscale so much as atmospheric; so many seem so dineresque.

              ko1, I agree with your opinion of Los Arcos, tho it seems like sometimes it's good & sometimes not - maybe depending on number of margaritas consumed? I love their patio tho, feels as much like Mexico as anywhere I've been in Balto. Where is El Salvador? it's funny my husband works with lots of Hispanic guys & most of them despise Salvadoran cooking (& some of them are Salvadorenans!)

              We really liked La Cazuela, but what is up with the Mountain of Rice?? what are you supposed to do w/all that rice!?(and no sauce)..

              elnicka - "Carlos O'Charlie's"? Really that is the name of the place?? I'll take your word for it & check it out.

              Has anyone been to the new incarnation of the Sunshine Grill in FP? It's across Eastern from La Cazuela, used to be Ethiopian.

              There is a place up in Parkville or thereabouts on Belair Rd north of Sandy Spring in a strip mall called Kiko's we've had good luck with in the past, really good mole & a huachinango Veracruzano that was delish. Pretty dining room, all the furniture etc is from Mexico. Haven't been in awhile - worth checking out tho & byob.

              Our usual haunt for Mexican is El Salto - I like everything about it except the location, tho they've done their best to erase the feel of whatever fast food joint it used to be (the one off Joppa, tho ditto for the Rt 2 location). Love the shrimp cocktail, steaks, I forget the name of the new grilled shrimp dish but it's great. Can be a little bland but usually someone brings out the "special salsa" & we always have a good time there. hint: go for the Texas margarita, with the extra shot of tequila on the side..

              1. crowsonguy Mar 15, 2007 08:21 PM

                Carolina, on the east side of Broadway by Latin Palace, has GREAT seafood soup (a meal for two), good Cuban sandwiches, chicken soup with real chicken, cheese burros, and lots of papusas. They at least serve beer, and the place is pleasant Definitely recommended... don't be put off by the sub-title that inexplicably says Tex Mex: it's not!

                1. ko1 Mar 16, 2007 08:04 AM

                  El Salvador is right on Broadway, not sure whichblock.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: ko1
                    c
                    chowsearch Mar 20, 2007 12:37 PM

                    Half-Salvadoran but it's El Trovador Restaurant. 318 South Broadway Baltimore, MD 21231 410-276-6200 410-276-3130

                    1. re: chowsearch
                      c
                      chowsearch Mar 20, 2007 01:03 PM

                      El Salvador, same owner as the Salvadorean half of the nicer El Trovador:
                      207 S Broadway Baltimore, MD 21231 Phone: 410-522-3270

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