Lolita;s , Cobre or Tequila Kitchen in Vancouver?
Trying to go for the best modern mex. for a friend's birthday. Looking for best value, best food, ambience is somewhat important too. Ive narrowed it down to the three, cant find prices for TK though. The other 2 are in my price range. If anyone who has been to any of these can tell me ehat was good, whichh theyd pick, that would be sincerely appreciated!
I've been to Lolita's a number of times (love their chicken tacos), Cobre once and have been waiting for Tequila Kitchen to settle in before venturing. Check out this thread for another Van Hound's assessment of TK (if you scroll down, there is also a link to a Westender review with some prices in it). Would love to hear your thoughts if you do go:
Of the other two, Lolita's hews a little closer to Mexico for its influences, whereas Cobre is pan-Latin. I don't think you would go wrong with either food-wise.
Since it is a celebration, you may have a larger group and want to make reservations. If so, Cobre's is the place to go as Lolita's is very small and it's first come first served, so unless you go early you would probably be looking at a wait. Come to think of it, I'm not sure Lolita's could accommodate a larger group...
Cobre's menu also lends itself to sharing/tapas style dining a bit more, which may be of interest. We went with 6 people and tried a wide range of dishes, all of which were delicious with the exception of the short ribs which were a little bland. Lolita's dishes are not quite as shareable but equally tasty and good value.
Finally, the ambience of each place is quite different. Lolita's is funkier, with a tiki hut by way of Acapulco feel to it. It can get quite loud and boisterous and it is very narrow so there is a bit of bumping into chairs and such. Cobre is rather more mellow although it still has a great vibe, possibly because it is divided into several different areas on two levels. I would give it the edge on decor, especially for a special occasion, but it is by no mean stuffy.
Hope this is helpful for starters.
Me and Julio's on Commercial Drive is another place to consider. It is run by the same people who run Lolita's. I haven't eaten there yet - though I have tried a couple of times but the wait for a table was too long. Me and Julio's is a fairly large place and has a patio - though I think they are not yet able to use it due to city licensing delays. It may be resolved by now.
I would say give TK a shot and report back here. I'm curious to see if they have resolved some of the issues I experienced with the food.