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Bringing Wine to a Mexican Restaurant

Leper Mar 17, 2011 02:31 PM

Okay Chowhounds, maybe one martini too many, but I just flashed on a bizarre idea. It is not uncommon to bring your own wine to fine restaurant and pay a corkage fee. But has ANYONE ever brought their own wine to a Mexican restaurant? (That includes you, Bill Hunt.) (Maybe this is the time to use the Lancers someone gave you in college.)

  1. b
    bricap Mar 20, 2011 09:56 PM

    Chinon00 mentioned Cab Franc, and this mirrors my experience with Mencia at a BYOB Mexican restaurant here in Chicago. (Mencia is believed to be closely related to, if not the same thing as, Cab Franc.) With a Mexican seafood dish, my $4 Espiral vinho verde from Trader Joe's worked very well, also. Another wine I paired successfully with Mexican food was a red from Mallorca, Spain which was 100% callet. That goes very well with the steak or pork dishes.

    1. s
      sedimental Mar 20, 2011 07:02 PM

      It has never occurred to me. I like Sangria, Margarita's and Mexican beer. I look forward to pairing food with those beverages (not wine). Even when I am at home cooking Bayless style- I don't choose wine. When in Mexico- I choose a nice Tequila.

      1 Reply
      1. re: sedimental
        westsidegal Mar 22, 2011 08:10 PM

        i don't bring margaritas to the mexican seafood restaurant that i frequent, in part because they are not licensed for hard liquor and, selfishly, i don't want to put them in a risky position.
        i need their food too much to put them at risk.

      2. westsidegal Mar 18, 2011 06:52 PM

        i bring wine to my favorite sinaloan/nayarit-type mexican seafood restaurant all the time.
        bring one bottle for me and for sharing with the staff, and a second bottle (same stuff) for the chef to take home.

        although i do bring solid wines, i don't bring the precious stuff. . .

        3 Replies
        1. re: westsidegal
          PolarBear Mar 19, 2011 09:01 AM

          What varietals have you found that work well with the dishes, if you don't mind?

          1. re: PolarBear
            westsidegal Mar 20, 2011 01:45 PM

            any not-too-heavy red will work with the pescado zarandeado as will any not-too-oaky chards.
            for the mojarra frita i am happy with any decent quality chardonnay.

            to my palate, it is best NOT to venture into the 'off-dry' part of the wine world with this food.

            i rarely order the camarones, even though i LOVE them, because they are a caloric wild card that i don't want to risk. when i do order the camarones, i normally order the Camarones a la Diabla (sp?) and order beer with it to soak up the heat.

          2. re: westsidegal
            Midlife Mar 20, 2011 12:06 PM

            No wonder you are such an expert on Mariscos Chente, ;o))))

          3. Chinon00 Mar 18, 2011 05:29 PM

            I'd be fearful of pairing a high alcohol (possibly "hot") wine like Red Zinfandel with spicy food. Big alcohol intensifies the spiciness in my experience; and I'm not sure how well big tannins go with spiciness either.
            Once I had Cabernet Franc with a spicy dish and was surprised how well it worked. I'd therefore lean toward fruity but lighter red wines for Mexican.

            1. Bill Hunt Mar 17, 2011 06:42 PM

              I have not, but am not often a BYOW person.

              For Mexican food, in very, very general terms, I would think Zinfandel, with some bigger fruit to cut the heat. Now, much would depend on the regional aspect of the Mexican cuisine. For a beef-oriented Tex-Mex menu, I'd opt for the Zin.

              Sorry that I could not help more.


              1. invinotheresverde Mar 17, 2011 04:38 PM

                I've brought my own tequila at a Mexican place in Philly, but never wine.

                I think Bill, like myself, lives in the land of no BYOAnything.

                1 Reply
                1. re: invinotheresverde
                  Bill Hunt Mar 17, 2011 06:46 PM

                  Yes, PHX has some tough rules, and there are too many to dive through. I know a few BYOW restaurants, but they are exclusive to such. One is attached to a wine shop, so the patron walks through one door, picks the wine, and then enters the restaurant, with it in tow.


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