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Nov 7, 2008 06:58 AM

Mercadito Cantina - Quick Review

My roommate and I tried Mercadito Cantina for dinner on Wednesday night. We hadn't heard much about Cantina, but had heard great things about Mercadito from multiple sources, and since that was a bit out of our price range for this particular dinner, we opted to head to Cantina instead. We split the Taquiza - the DIY tacos option - which comes with your choice of meat, your choice of two salsas, chopped onion, lime, and corn tortillas. We got the skirt steak, as well as the Chipotle and Verecruzana salsas. We also had the Arroz Casero as a side dish.

The tacos were delicious - I thought the tortillas were a bit small, but the leftover meat and salsa were both great on their own or with the rice as a side dish. Both salsas were really good as well. My roommate preferred the Verecruzana, but I kept gravitating towards the Chipotle, which was a bit sweeter with a nice kick at the end, mostly because it was smoother and I tend to not like my salsa too chunky, but I did enjoy the Verecruzana also. The rice was delicious as well, but I think next time I'd like to try a more adventurous side dish.

Overall, I thought the experience was great. The restaurant wasn't too crowded, and I thought the Taquiza was a good option - the other taco option is 2 for $9.50, and those didn't look like as good a value. I'd definitely go back - there are plenty of other dishes I'd like to try.

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  1. My first time at Mercadito Cantina - love it -- On Monday and Tuesday nights they have all you can eat tacos - $21. At first was a bit disappointed at the size of tortillas - but the fillings definately fill you up - They come 2 to an order --(the same filling) and of cause wound up eating 3 orders --my favorite = estilo baja - shrim , habernero and avocado cole slaw!
    Also ordered platanos - so -so most people had the salsa as side! Which definately going to try next time
    Drinks were fun also--

    1. I live close to Jackson Heights and I regularly trek to Sunset Park and Red Hook for mexican so . . . I'm really not a fan of this type of food when it's in manhattan or in this case, the east village. but, I ended up eating dinner there recently and I had something really good. first of all the tacos are laughably small, and outrageously expensive. however, their selection of guacamoles was great. I ordered the pollo a la brasa (1/2 chicken) which was $13 or $14? I can't remember but I figured it would just be like rotisserie chicken or something; it came with rice, maduros and a garlic sauce.

      holy cow that was really good chicken; completely not what I expected. 4 pieces of chicken: drumstick, thigh, boneless breast cut into two. it was very flavorful heavily seasoned, perfectly grilled chicken and the accompaniments were rich and tasty. such a surprisingly good dish so if anyone ends up there and doesn't feel like being ripped off with the tacos and such, try this chicken dish. a very pleasant find (kinda like the randomly good ceviche I had at Gonzalez y Gonzalez recently) and the sauce was the typical garlic sauce you'd get from a dominican steam-table place. tasty tasty.