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New Mexican restaurants.

1963 May 12, 2010 03:52 PM

Wondering if there are any in Montreal. I have a craving.

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  1. m
    Maximilien RE: 1963 May 12, 2010 04:07 PM

    You might try Quetzalli, the restaurant that took over the "Los Classicos" location on St-Laurent opened couple of weeks ago.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Maximilien
      sweettoothMTL RE: Maximilien May 13, 2010 07:53 AM

      Now that's interesting news. Do you have any more info? Is it the old Classicos owner?

      1. re: sweettoothMTL
        jcampbell RE: sweettoothMTL May 18, 2010 12:33 PM

        The same people as before are running it - the food is virtually identical, though perhaps a slightly smaller menu, and no liquor license thus far. Service seems a little better too, with several new wait staff and shorter wait time for the food. I was a regular before they closed, and am absolutely thrilled that they're back!

    2. d
      Daiya RE: 1963 May 13, 2010 05:21 AM

      Or are you talking about cuisine from "New Mexico"?

      1. t
        texaspeppers RE: 1963 May 15, 2010 11:42 AM

        I like Itacate. It's a small place, clean but not fancy .The people are very welcoming. Mexican coffee with cinnamon and the triple x house hot sauce you have to ask for and which should be respected mmmm......

        15 Replies
        1. re: texaspeppers
          lagatta RE: texaspeppers May 16, 2010 08:17 AM

          Itacate is a small restaurant located at 59 rue Bernard E. just east of St-Dominique, prettier and far more spotless than "hole in the wall" usually indicates. Small family business. I hadn't posted it in this thread as while it hasn't been in operation for many years, it is only "new" in the sense that it has moved two doors east, to slightly larger premises, with a slightly more extensive menu. Very nice place. www.itacate.ca

          1. re: lagatta
            Mr F RE: lagatta May 16, 2010 08:33 AM

            Of course, if the OP means "New" as in New Mexico, they're probably out of luck. Haven't heard of that particular cuisine being served here... Tex-Mex would be the closest we have, and AFAIK there's no place in that genre that's in favour with 'hounds.

            But for straight-up Mexican, Itacate is good, and pretty authentic according to a friend who's spent a great deal of time in Mexico.

            1. re: lagatta
              babermoon RE: lagatta May 18, 2010 04:15 PM

              Isn't it on Beaubien?

            2. re: texaspeppers
              karela RE: texaspeppers May 18, 2010 06:04 PM

              Itacate is on Beaubien, must have been a typo.

              I second (third...fourth...) the recommendations for Itacate, EXCELLENT food and super friendly servers. I am eager to go back and explore more of their menu!

              1. re: karela
                PadmeSkywalker RE: karela May 18, 2010 07:02 PM

                I also recommend Itacate. I went for the first time this Friday. Great authentic food. I`m Latin American and I have no complaints about their food. Their mole was a touch on the sweet side but the tacos al pastor were amazing. Their XXX sauce is actually hot, not wimpy hot like most restaurants. The prices are really good as well.

                1. re: karela
                  lagatta RE: karela May 22, 2010 05:09 PM

                  My brain hasn't been working properly of late - I have been working very hard on something non chow-related. Yes of course Itacate is on Beaubien, there is practically nothing at all on Bernard E.

                  Lovely little place.

                2. re: texaspeppers
                  hungryann RE: texaspeppers Jul 12, 2010 10:10 AM

                  I went to Itacate this weekend and I'll join the chorus of cheers for this charming little resto. I wasn't too hungry so I only had the tortilla soup and the gorditas de chicharron. I had a bite of my friend's tacos dorados and everything was very good although a tad undersalted for my taste. I shall return to sample other dishes. The horchata was great.
                  BTW what's with lollipops at the cash that taste nothing like the flavour advertised on the wrapper?!? LOL I took a lime one and it tasted and smelled like bubble gum! Too funny!

                  1. re: hungryann
                    ios94 RE: hungryann Jul 12, 2010 10:22 AM

                    I was there on Saturday too, (we were probably there at the same time). My wife is now addicted to this place.

                    1. re: ios94
                      hungryann RE: ios94 Jul 12, 2010 01:19 PM

                      I was there on Sunday evening.

                      1. re: hungryann
                        Erica2125 RE: hungryann Apr 14, 2011 08:43 AM

                        We're planning on heading to Itacate in the next couple of days. I looked at the Google maps, but can anyone who has been there give me an idea of the parking situation? Are there any lots nearby, or do we just have to keep our fingers crossed for metered parking closeby?

                        1. re: Erica2125
                          chilipepper RE: Erica2125 Apr 14, 2011 08:52 AM

                          There's quite a bit of side street parking.

                          1. re: chilipepper
                            kpzoo RE: chilipepper Apr 14, 2011 09:01 AM

                            Agree - plenty of street parking, both free and metered. Just watch out for resident-parking areas/hours. You shouldn't have a problem.

                          2. re: Erica2125
                            ios94 RE: Erica2125 Apr 14, 2011 08:52 AM

                            There are no lots in the area (that I'm aware of) but we always end up finding a spot on Beaubien or one of the side streets (beware of permit spots). Worse case scenario you go around the block once. It's definitely easier to find a spot around Iticate than say looking for a spot on St Zotique for Bottega.

                            Erica, I would recommend a reservation too.

                            1. re: ios94
                              Erica2125 RE: ios94 Apr 17, 2011 09:51 AM

                              Thanks to everyone for the advice on parking. We had a chance to go there this weekend and it was fantastic, best Mexican/Texmex I've had in Montreal. We started with the guacamole and chips, very creamy and delicious. My husband doesn't usually care for guacamole and he ate almost the entire portion and raved about it. I had the chicken enchiladas verdes, chicken was moist and the green salsa was fantastic. My husband had the carnitas burrito, and that was even better. Everything just tasted incredibly fresh, even the pico de gallo on the side of the burrito dish tasted like everything was diced up right before it was delivered to the table. Prices can't be beat, this is one of my new favorites. And, I didn't realize they are open for lunch as well!

                              1. re: Erica2125
                                kpzoo RE: Erica2125 Apr 17, 2011 12:38 PM

                                Their weekend brunch is super yummy, too!

                  2. k
                    kkjensen RE: 1963 May 19, 2010 10:22 AM

                    I've enjoyed "Taco Express" in Chateauguay (10min over the mercier bridge)....very tasty and authentic.

                    Sure will try some of the other suggestions...it's tough to find someone around here that will turn the heat up and season they way things should be.

                    1. j
                      jay_81k RE: 1963 May 21, 2010 07:30 PM

                      Just tried Itacate. Service was ok a little disorganized.I ordered Tacos de cameron al chipotle. It was tacos with Shrimp in some chipotle sauce. Although the shrimp was a bit overcooked it was delicious! There was only 8 small shrimps divided into 3 tacos. I was still hungry by the end so I asked for a small guacamole and got a tiny one. Luckily I was only charged 1$ for it:> Id definetly go back. Im disappointed in myself for not trying the xxx sauce.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: jay_81k
                        Dusty08 RE: jay_81k May 26, 2010 11:23 AM

                        What about Tequila Taco? It's on the corner of Sherebrooke and St-Laurent.
                        Has anyone been there? what's it like?

                        1. re: Dusty08
                          jay_81k RE: Dusty08 May 26, 2010 11:46 AM

                          I went a couple times. Was really impressed the first time I went. I had authentic tacos that came with salad and guacamole and rice. Was very reasonably priced aswell. But then I just found it grosser and grosser each time i went back. One example is that they put everything on the same plate, so your salad dressing gets all over your tacos and just ruins them completely. I brought somebody there the last time I went and she agreed that it was gross for that reason. I guess if I go back Ill just ask for the salad on a different plate. its worth a try though, wouldnt mind knowing what other people think.

                          1. re: Dusty08
                            Claire Ann RE: Dusty08 Aug 5, 2010 07:50 PM

                            I've been there a few times and have loved it every time. I'm from the States where Mexican is commonplace and had been scared away from Montreal Mexican by the 3 Amigos and the place on St-Denis across from the Carré St-Louis (Mañana?).

                            I initially thought Tequila Taco was going to be much blander and more expensive than it was. A plate of 3 small tacos is around $10. Delicious tacos (many flavor combinations to choose from) on chewy flavorful tortillas. There is salad nearby, but I didn't find it offensive in the slightest.

                            I've also tried the choriqueso and guacamole of the appetizers (around $7, I think) and both were great. The choriqueso is exactly what it sounds like, savory spicy sausage chunks melted in cheese. It's a calorie bomb, but worth it. The guacamole is tasty, too, but don't expect too many chips. They come arranged like a hedgehog, or a mutant stegosaurus on the guac.

                            Go and enjoy it!

                            1. re: Claire Ann
                              unlaced RE: Claire Ann Sep 3, 2010 08:42 AM

                              I ate here for the first time last night. It wasn't mind blowing and I prefer the kind of homestyle food that Hecho en Mexico offers, but it was still delicious and good value. My friend and I ordered 4 appetizers to share and that was more than enough food!

                              I thought the guacamole was a little bland, but liked the refried beans. We also had the sausage and cheese which was just ridiculously indulgent and delicious. We also had the tacos, second from the bottom of the list, which were nice, especially with the accompanying salsas. A very nice point was that since there were two of us, the waitress asked the chef to make a fourth (usually served in threes) so we could have two each. On that note, service was excellent throughout the evening, a definite high point!

                        2. b
                          bakersdelight RE: 1963 May 30, 2010 11:13 PM

                          I thought I saw one on Monkland as I whizzed by on the 103 yesterday, same side of the street as, and not far from (but east of), the Wild Beans Café. It looked like it was below street level.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: bakersdelight
                            kpzoo RE: bakersdelight May 31, 2010 04:54 AM

                            You must mean Amaranto. It's been there for at least a few years, but lately they seem to be doing a bit of a better job promoting themselves at street level, with a sandwich board, menu outside, etc. I finally ate there recently and it was actually really, really, good! I had the chicken enchiladas verde, which rival the ones at Au Coin du Mexique - I actually found them even better, a little more refined, if you will. They were served with an elegant mound of Mexican rice, and a little side bowl of beans. My friend enjoyed her tacos al pastor. The service was very friendly but professional, even though the place looks like someone's living room. There's a wall full of Mexican groceries including things like bags of epazote - and a chalkboard list of other groceries for sale, including Oaxaca cheese, homemade tortilla chips and salsa.

                            5974 Monkland; 514-510-1225

                            1. re: kpzoo
                              ios94 RE: kpzoo May 31, 2010 06:09 AM

                              Amaranto is excellent (I've praised it in many threads over the years), my wife and I would frequent a couple of times per month when we lived nearby. We still try to make it out there when we can but visits are unfortunately less frequent. They've been opened since at least early 2007. Coincidentally we tried Iticate for the first time just this past weekend, it was very good as well, the Tortilla soup had great flavor, the Gordita appetizer was excellent, the enchiladas with tomatillo sauce (salsa verde) were ok but not as good as Amaranto. Iticate melted a cheese on top whereas Amaranto uses a feta type cheese sprinkled on top which gives is a much better saltier taste. My tacos carnitas were packed with relatively moist pork but it could have used a bit more flavor.

                              1. re: ios94
                                bakersdelight RE: ios94 May 31, 2010 11:54 PM

                                do they serve any amaranth then? it sounds wonderful. I'll have to visit soon!

                          2. j
                            jay_81k RE: 1963 Jun 1, 2010 09:08 AM

                            Amaranto is not good, atleast from my experiences there. Itacate is much better. If youre going to try one or the other definetly go to Itacate.

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: jay_81k
                              kpzoo RE: jay_81k Jun 1, 2010 09:41 AM

                              What was not good at Amaranto?

                              1. re: kpzoo
                                ios94 RE: kpzoo Jun 1, 2010 10:01 AM

                                I don't believe they serve amaranth, (didn't even know what it was but just looked it up).
                                Too bad you had negative experiences jay, what was wrong?
                                They don't have an extensive menu but what they have I find they do very well and they cook the majority of the meal from scratch. Almost everything is as fresh as can be.

                                1. re: ios94
                                  jay_81k RE: ios94 Jun 4, 2010 03:40 PM

                                  I just didnt find it tasty. The last time I went it was for a birthday party and they set it up Buffet style. we had 3 different mains and a couple starters, from what I remember it was a cactus salad & Guacamole for starters, and some beef , lamb & Chicken Mole fajitas.. I dont think anybody there found it any good. But the people were nice!

                                2. re: kpzoo
                                  Ghostquatre RE: kpzoo Jun 6, 2010 07:45 AM

                                  I've been to Amaranto and I have never really enjoyed it. The tacos al pastor were good but I never really liked anything else I'm not exactly sure if it's because I don't like authentic mex that much. But once I had the chicken tacos and they were barely edible. The shell was wrapped around the filling and it was as hard as a brick. And also everytime you order chicken, they seem to make it intentionally very very dry.

                                  Also I find that they don't have enough variety and items are always missing form the lmenu

                                  1. re: Ghostquatre
                                    kpzoo RE: Ghostquatre Jun 6, 2010 02:00 PM

                                    That's odd about the chicken. I've only been there once but the chicken enchiladas verdes were luscious - not dry at all.

                                    My issue with them is they only seem to be open half the time they're supposed to be. Tried to go again last night - this time, got wise and called first. Owner apologized because a large group was taking up the whole place but encouraged us to come tonight instead.

                                    1. re: kpzoo
                                      CroqueMadame RE: kpzoo Jun 6, 2010 08:10 PM

                                      Speaking of dry chicken at Montreal Mexican joints...
                                      I find the chicken in the Coin du Mexique dishes (enchiladas, chile rellenos, etc) to be incredibly dry, it's the same story every time we go. Perhaps they should think about putting a bit of dark meat in there?
                                      We were just reflecting on that over the weekend when we were there.

                              2. f
                                foodinspace RE: 1963 Jun 8, 2010 09:21 AM

                                Well, it seems this has become a general discussion of Mexican restaurants...

                                My Mexican girlfriend and her friends just went to Iguanas Ranas and felt it was very good and authentic. I haven't been personally, though this weekend we went there and bought carnitas, barbacoa, tortillas, and all the fixings and made tacos at home. The meat was delicious...not dry at all.

                                The place is very much a local hole-in-the-wall but, as I said, it gets the seal of approval from a bunch of Mexicans! Oh, they also have Mexican karaoke on Friday nights and live Mariachi music on Saturday nights (so the sign says).

                                It's on Rue de l'Eglise just east of Decarie, b/w du Collège and Côte Vertu metro stops, VSL.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: foodinspace
                                  foodinspace RE: foodinspace Jul 14, 2010 01:56 PM

                                  I have now personally eaten at the restaurant. Great!! Though I haven't been to Itacate so I can't compare. I think it's cheaper. We were a group of 7 and had more than enough tacos for <$10/pp. For groups, at least, they bring the meat, tortillas, and fixins separately so one can build their own tacos. Again, I was there with a group of Mexicans, and everyone liked it. There is live Mariachi on Saturday night...

                                  I am now off to the new Mexican restaurant (La Cantina) that just opened on Centre and Shearer in the Point...

                                  1. re: foodinspace
                                    mtlmaven RE: foodinspace Jul 16, 2010 10:12 AM

                                    Yes! Just went with some friends today over lunch and both of them felt that it was as close as they'd ever gotten to authentic Mexican cuisine in Montreal. We had some tacos carnitas, gorditas and quesadilla queso. I would recommend it for its rusticity!

                                    1. re: mtlmaven
                                      qcfoodi RE: mtlmaven Jul 16, 2010 01:27 PM

                                      Correction: I passed by the door after work last night and noticed that they are closed all weekend. I guess that it makes sense. Most of their business would be lunch business from the old Northern Electric building.

                                  2. qcfoodi RE: 1963 Jul 14, 2010 06:21 PM

                                    Cafe Cantina Taqueria at the corner of Centre and Shearer in Point St Charles. The owner is from France and runs it with his wife from Quebec City. Great tex-mex food as made by mexican americans as opposed to the usual slock. He own a taqueria in France before. Monday through Saturday until five or so. The sign says it closes at 6pm, but I've never seen it open after 5:15.

                                    1. m
                                      mtlmaven RE: 1963 Jul 14, 2010 06:48 PM

                                      I have to go along with many on this post and say that Ithaca is fantastic. Went today with my husband and son and we had a wonderful meal that was fresh, authentic and yummy. We had some gorditas de chicheron, the house burrito and the burrito de Pastor. The only problem is that we almost had too much food. I would go again any day!

                                      3 Replies
                                      1. re: mtlmaven
                                        hungryann RE: mtlmaven Jul 14, 2010 07:41 PM

                                        I think you mean Itacate and not Ithaca, but it can be your Ithaca if you choose and you could return very soon ;)

                                        1. re: hungryann
                                          mtlmaven RE: hungryann Jul 15, 2010 06:28 AM

                                          Yes! I meant Itacate. Oops!

                                        2. re: mtlmaven
                                          Mr F RE: mtlmaven Jul 15, 2010 06:13 AM

                                          The burritos are insanely huge. Definitely a sit-down type of burrito.

                                        3. j
                                          jay_81k RE: 1963 Jul 23, 2010 07:00 PM

                                          Just tried this place on St Denis called La Matraca. They only have tacos, but they are very authentic and pretty delicious. Definetly as good or better than any Ive had. I had the Tacos Al Pastor, and the Gringa. Both good, but liked the Al Pastor better. It was about 6$ +tax for 3 small tacos. There was also an option of ordering them in singles for slightly more. Only downside I found was that there wasnt much meat in them which I personally dont mind, and theres no Guacamole or anything like that, but they do give you three types of salsa to put on your tacos.

                                          3 Replies
                                          1. re: jay_81k
                                            OliverB RE: jay_81k Jul 24, 2010 07:09 AM

                                            Is that the small place on the corner of St-Denis and Sherbrooke?

                                            If so, I've tried that one about a month back and while it was a decent meal, I didn't really find it to be all that great. The tacos were okay, they had many different variations and menu options with just about every kind of filling from meat, chicken, fish, veggie, etc. But I found the price a bit high for what you get and while they were tasty and filling, they really were not exceptional or very memorable. I'm often driving past and it's unlikely I'd stop in again anytime soon... what this city really needs is a "Pick's" or "Buns" style version of West Coast taco trucks - a small counter joint where one can order moderately priced San Diego/Bay style Mexican street food!

                                            I absolutely love Mexican but there's really just not a single restaurant that I've been to in this city where I'd ever go out of my way to return for this kind of meal. Perhaps I'm just being too picky... but to me, great Mexican should be cheap, filling and messy! We don't have anything like that in Montreal.

                                            I'll have to give Itacate and that taqueria in the Point a try though,,,

                                            1. re: OliverB
                                              jay_81k RE: OliverB Jul 28, 2010 07:39 AM

                                              Ya wrong place, the place i was talking about is like St Denis near Mt Royal I believe.

                                              1. re: OliverB
                                                lagatta RE: OliverB Jul 30, 2010 06:43 PM

                                                Well, Mexican friends here would find that a bit simplistic. Not that they are at all averse to the Mexican version of poutine, but it is one of the most ancient and varied cuisines in the Americas and all...

                                                Sweet little Itacate is anything but messy.

                                            2. o
                                              OliverB RE: 1963 Jul 24, 2010 07:30 AM

                                              Oops... I just realized that the place that I'm thinking about (that didn't leave me overly impressed) was probably on the corner of Sherbrooke and St-Laurent, not St-Denis!

                                              Again, everything was pretty good but I'd never recommend or go out of my way to return. Maybe due to the location and the interior decor which they try to "fancy" up with the bar, etc. but prices were a bit high for the offerings too.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: OliverB
                                                Ghostquatre RE: OliverB Jul 24, 2010 10:07 AM

                                                probably tequila taco

                                              2. m
                                                mzalce RE: 1963 Jul 26, 2010 12:36 PM

                                                This weekend I went to "El Rey del Taco" at the Jean Talon market. I was craving for some real tacos. I am from Mexico City so I know the real thing.

                                                I had the carnitas (you can think of the mexican version of pulled pork) and the tacos were good. Of course, missing was the rare cuts (buche, nana, cuero, etc) but the can't complain with the meat.

                                                I had also the Tacos al pastor. They have the spit but I got the meat from the grill. To have excellent pastores, you need the meat to come straight from the spit and I will love to go later in the evening to try them. Meat was good, but nothing great.

                                                My wife and kid ordered the parrilla mixta, with cuts of chorizo, beef, chicken, picadillo. The problem was that the dish is so big that at the end the cuts are cold. I will talk to the chef to give him ideas.

                                                I think that will be the place when I have the cravings. I went to La Matraca and got the cardinal sin in tacos, cold tortillas with the pastores but the gringa was quiet good.

                                                11 Replies
                                                1. re: mzalce
                                                  ios94 RE: mzalce Jul 30, 2010 11:52 AM

                                                  I just tried Iguanas in Ville St Laurent today at lunch, I had a Puerquita (Gordita), it was very very tasty and seemed to have been freshly made.

                                                  Then I had their Pozole, with generous amounts of beef and pork (a few different cuts were included). The soup itself was missing some kick but they bring you a bunch of condiments (onions, cilantro, two different salsas, radish, etc..) so you could control your own taste and spiciness.

                                                  There were a few other customers in there, but I was the only non Spanish speaking one. lol...A good sign, I guess. It looked like "mom" was back there cooking too another good sign.

                                                  I will be back especially considering it's a 5 minute drive from the office.

                                                  1. re: ios94
                                                    kpzoo RE: ios94 Jul 30, 2010 12:32 PM

                                                    Sounds great, must try! Here's the contact info again since it's buried way above:

                                                    Iguanas Ranas
                                                    1486, Rue De l'Eglise,
                                                    Saint-Laurent, QC H4L 2H6

                                                    1. re: kpzoo
                                                      ios94 RE: kpzoo Jul 30, 2010 01:01 PM

                                                      Yes, thanks kpzoo. I actually meant to include their website before, the menu is of course included. The website is only in Spanish.


                                                      1. re: ios94
                                                        kpzoo RE: ios94 Jul 30, 2010 01:22 PM

                                                        Thanks for the link. Wow, that does look authentic! Now I really can't wait to try it! ;-)

                                                        How does it compare to Le petit coin du Mexique, if you've been there?

                                                        1. re: kpzoo
                                                          humbert RE: kpzoo Jul 30, 2010 02:05 PM

                                                          Anyone know about the place on decarie? Something with bbq in the name...if I could get a name it can help me...thanks! Its in between cv metro and du college....

                                                          1. re: humbert
                                                            hungryann RE: humbert Jul 30, 2010 06:06 PM

                                                            Do you mean M. Enchilada d' O specializing in authentic carnitas and barbacoa? I have been meaning to try it as well.

                                                            1. re: hungryann
                                                              ios94 RE: hungryann Jul 31, 2010 07:54 AM

                                                              Kpzoo, I've actually only been to Coin du Mexique once about 3 years ago and I only had the tacos which I remember being ok. I remember the wife waiting for her food while I was served so that kind of killed it for us. It was a Friday night and they were really busy so comparing it on that sole visit isn't really fair.

                                                              1. re: hungryann
                                                                humbert RE: hungryann Jul 31, 2010 12:38 PM

                                                                Yes I think thats the place, there is nothing on the net about it so far....

                                                            2. re: kpzoo
                                                              SourberryLily RE: kpzoo Aug 17, 2010 06:49 AM

                                                              I've had a look at their website. I'm sort of worried looking at their menu!

                                                              Some dishes include "poussin", the french word for chick (baby chicken). What is up with that?? Please tell me it's a translation mistake!

                                                              1. re: SourberryLily
                                                                SnackHappy RE: SourberryLily Aug 17, 2010 07:00 AM

                                                                It's not uncommon to eat poussin. It's just a young chicken around 1lb in weight.


                                                                1. re: SnackHappy
                                                                  SourberryLily RE: SnackHappy Aug 17, 2010 07:14 AM

                                                                  Thanks. I was afraid it would be something like eating the chick while it's still in the egg.

                                                    2. o
                                                      OliverB RE: 1963 Sep 4, 2010 02:44 PM

                                                      I ate at Itacate a few weeks ago and had a very good meal for under $20. It wasn't a knockout experience but pretty good for Mexican in this city. I guess that isn't saying a lot, but I'll surely be back.

                                                      I also finally tried Iguana Ranas on De L'Eglise and Decarie the other day and was very impressed with the authenticity... a small family run restaurant/convenient store with some great shelf stock of imported sauces, chiles, salas, chips, candies, etc. The family are Mexican imigrants and the owner himself (an extremely nice man- the entire family for that matter!) doesn't even speak English. His daughter handles all the anglo service and orders.

                                                      I forget everything that I tried - it was a small takeout order but the sopes that were recommended to me was outstanding! Unfortunately my burrito and chilaquile carne asada were inedible due to the quality of meat sourced. It both smelled and tasted like dirty feet and was entirely unappealing... I guess I'll stick with the chicken and vege dishes upon return though I still long for a real California style burrito/taco experience in this city!

                                                      I know that food trucks are banned and illegal due to civil bylaws but one idea I had which I don't understand why it isn't put into action is that someone should take the concept of the "taco truck" for instance, and apply it strictly to home and office delivery. So you would have a travelling kitchen equipped to make burritos, tacos, chilis, etc but rather than serving to street customers, why not have several at various posts in different neighborhoods serving telephone orders for office workers and residences. People can call in and the restaurant comes right to their door with cheap and piping hot street meat! I just really want to see a taco truck in Montreal!!!

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: OliverB
                                                        mtlmaven RE: OliverB May 21, 2011 06:54 AM

                                                        Interesting you should mention the quality of the meat sourced at Iguana Ranas. I had ordered a pork burrito and that smell was a total turnoff! The rest of the food was great but that meat smell was deplorable.

                                                        1. re: mtlmaven
                                                          OliverB RE: mtlmaven May 21, 2011 07:24 AM

                                                          I literally dumped my order in the trash... it smelled like old dog meat and tasted worse. I'll never order anything but chicken there again... not that I'd ever be out that way for Mexican anyhow. The meat was gross.

                                                      2. r
                                                        Rizzo1 RE: 1963 Sep 23, 2010 06:08 AM

                                                        Went to Itacate last week. Overall good impression.

                                                        Service was very friendly and warm.

                                                        Of the six of us, here is what I heard:
                                                        1. Burritos were very good.
                                                        2. Fajitas were not at all interesting
                                                        3. I had the tortilla soup which really hit the spot. But one notch below the soup at La Guadeloupe Mexicaine on Ontario.
                                                        4. My wife and I both had the Tacos al Pastor, which were quite good but not the best I've had in Montreal. I enjoyed the Pastor more at El Sombrero on Belanger (and even at Popocateptl, also on Belanger) One minor complaint about the pastor: unlike most restaurants where you are given a small bowl with onions and cilantro, Itacate's Pastor came with the onions and cilantro already on them... I personally love cilantro and would have liked to garnish my own tacos (i.e. the way they are served in Mexico!)

                                                        For fans of spicy salsas, note that their habanero salsa is very mild (how do you even do that?!?). I should have asked for the xxx.

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: Rizzo1
                                                          DarillBrosseau RE: Rizzo1 Apr 14, 2011 08:55 AM

                                                          thats amazing, thank you guys, for all these choices, April is gonna be my Mexican fiesta month, and i'll be back with my reviews!


                                                          i know BorritosVille is great but no meat....

                                                        2. j
                                                          J1836 RE: 1963 May 20, 2011 09:41 AM

                                                          Is there such a thing as quality tex mex? 3 Amigos atmosphere and menu, but better quality food...and drinks that are not-so-watered-down...?

                                                          3 Amigos
                                                          1657 Rue Sainte-Catherine W, Montreal, QC H3H1L9, CA

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: J1836
                                                            EaterBob RE: J1836 May 20, 2011 06:14 PM

                                                            If you emphasize the Tex, the short answer is "yes." It's called Icehouse.

                                                            1. re: EaterBob
                                                              J1836 RE: EaterBob May 21, 2011 07:21 AM

                                                              I tried Ice House. Too cramped for my liking and wasn't thrown back by the food. I hear they have a terrace up, so I might give it a 2nd try..

                                                              I went to Itacate on Beaubien yesterday (yes, not Tex Mex). It was REALLY good despite being too tiny and cramped for me.

                                                              Great appetizers. One small note, the habanero sauce was surprisingly not that spicy and the one up, ''xxx'', was extremely (and probably too hot for the avg.). They need to make a sauce between the two.

                                                          2. f
                                                            fooditude RE: 1963 Apr 17, 2012 03:55 PM

                                                            Cafe Cantina in Pointe St Charles (on Centre street) is GREAT! I pretty much live on the Burrito Carnitas and Chicken Quesedillas. Pretty tasty double chocolate cookies for desert! 1880 Centre street.

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: fooditude
                                                              deadchildstar RE: fooditude Apr 18, 2012 01:35 PM

                                                              +1! Definitely more "California"-mex. Personally, I prefer the carnitas to chicken any day, but have never had a bad experience there. The burritos are giant. Also a nice spot for just coffee and dessert (desserts seems to rotate a bit - tried the flourless chocolate cake and the lemon tart). Fresh juices are delicious if pricey. I would say the food is pricey except the portions and quality make it worth every penny (A take out burrito runs you $10).

                                                            2. hungryann RE: 1963 May 30, 2014 05:31 PM

                                                              Reviving an old thread to ask if anyone knows about a Mexican place Casa Figueroa? A coworker catered a small party from them and had nothing but good things to say. What's the word on chow hound since I've never heard of this place: www.casafigueroa.ca

                                                              3 Replies
                                                              1. re: hungryann
                                                                foodinspace RE: hungryann May 31, 2014 03:37 AM

                                                                Better be really good at those prices. $14 for Tacos Dorados? Does it come with anything else?

                                                                BTW, I moved from Pointe St Charles several years ago. I'm curious to know whether Cafe Cantina still exists; hopefully their business is doing well?

                                                                1. re: foodinspace
                                                                  hungryann RE: foodinspace May 31, 2014 04:25 AM

                                                                  I don't know what the plates are served with. All I know, is my coworker paid 350$ tax in for 15 people.

                                                                  1. re: foodinspace
                                                                    melani1 RE: foodinspace Jun 10, 2014 08:49 AM

                                                                    Yes Cafe Cantina is still open, but they close early, haven't been in over a year myself

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