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Homi - the best Mexican restaurant in the Twin Cities

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Freeze666 Nov 2, 2012 09:35 AM

I wanted to start a thread to show some love for the best Mexican restaurant in the Twin Cities, Homi. It's located in the Midway area of St. Paul on University and Victoria.

The thing that most impressed me was the fact that everything is fresh and made from scratch, and it REALLY shows. The down-home, mama's kitchen style Mexican food is superior to everything else I've ever tried. Hands-down, without a shadow of a doubt this is the best Mexican restaurant in MN.

I encourage all fellow Chowhounds to go there and try it for yourself. I guarantee you won't be disappointed.

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    Brad Ballinger RE: Freeze666 Nov 2, 2012 05:54 PM

    Homi has gotten some love on this board (chilaquiles thread and the University Avenue thread). I have just returned from dinner there tonight. I will echo the whole made from scratch and made to order comment. I like Andale for cheap and good tacos. I like Sonora Grill for quick casual. But I really like Homi for all the care they put into their food.

    10 Replies
    1. re: Brad Ballinger
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      JimGrinsfelder RE: Brad Ballinger Nov 3, 2012 08:12 AM

      Brad,

      I suggest you head over to Maya Cuisine on Central Ave NE (between 18 1/2th street and 19th street on the west side). Try the Veracruz chicken tamale and some tacos.

      If all goes right this weekend, I'm going to get to Homi for chilaquiles.

      1. re: JimGrinsfelder
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        Brad Ballinger RE: JimGrinsfelder Nov 3, 2012 12:02 PM

        Well, I like El Taco Riendo, nearby. I will have to give it a shot. Just don't get to NE that much. The good news is that there are many Mexican and ALatin American places spread out, and one doesn't always have to go to St. Paul's west side only anymore.

        1. re: Brad Ballinger
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          JimGrinsfelder RE: Brad Ballinger Nov 4, 2012 07:16 AM

          I like El Taco Riendo too. And Adelita's as well. But I'm not going back to either of them while Maya Cuisine is cooking the way they are right now.

          1. re: JimGrinsfelder
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            semanticantics RE: JimGrinsfelder Nov 8, 2012 07:54 AM

            Adelita's is some of the worse food I've ever had.

            1. re: semanticantics
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              BigE RE: semanticantics Nov 8, 2012 08:05 AM

              Yeah, I'm going to have to echo this. Grotesque portions, but average at best food. On the level of Acapulco.

              1. re: BigE
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                semanticantics RE: BigE Nov 8, 2012 08:45 AM

                My food was terribly bland, but more interesting was what was on the televisions when I went. A movie from the "Blade" series, with a guy missing half his face, and a real crime show featuring a dogs hurt in dog fighting rings.

                1. re: semanticantics
                  AnneInMpls RE: semanticantics Nov 8, 2012 11:34 PM

                  Wasn't that a year ago? Get over it, already. The food & atmosphere at Adelita's isn't tops, but it's not that bad. I've taken my mom there, and she liked it.

                  But I'm definitely taking Mom to Homi's next time.

                2. re: BigE
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                  JimGrinsfelder RE: BigE Nov 9, 2012 01:32 PM

                  The Tacos Al Pastor at Adelita's are the only thing I ever order. Going there and ordering anything else is, IMO, like going to Maverick's for anything but Roast Beef or Brother's Deli for anything but Corned Beef on Rye.

                  When I'm there, at lunch, TV is usually south of the border soccer or telenovelas.

              2. re: JimGrinsfelder
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                Brad Ballinger RE: JimGrinsfelder Nov 16, 2012 10:09 AM

                Jim, I just ate lunch there today. Did not have the tamale you recommend, but had three different tacos. For 14 cents more per taco, I prefer the tacos at Andale. The al pastor was better at Maya, but the cabeza and carne asada were much better at Andale. Plus Andale uses two tortillas per taco.

                I will go back, though, and give the tamale a try.

                1. re: Brad Ballinger
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                  JimGrinsfelder RE: Brad Ballinger Nov 16, 2012 12:44 PM

                  14 cents saved is 14 cents earned. You can toss your money about like it grows on trees Daddy Warbucks.

                  I'll go try the Cabeza and Carne Asada at Andale.

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          karykat RE: Freeze666 Nov 3, 2012 09:06 AM

          What do you like there?

          2 Replies
          1. re: karykat
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            Brad Ballinger RE: karykat Nov 3, 2012 11:16 AM

            Chilaquiles, banana leaf tamale, soups, gorditas. Still working my way through the menu.

            1. re: Brad Ballinger
              EricShawnSmith RE: Brad Ballinger Nov 3, 2012 11:34 AM

              Homi's Caldo De Cameron is the best soup I have ever had. Down home yet slightly refined. Fresh head on Shrimps. Head sucking, bowl licking goodness.

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            ShinyCake RE: Freeze666 Nov 8, 2012 07:18 AM

            What's the atmosphere like? I don't care personally, but I'm trying to pick a place for dinner Friday night and my mom doesn't like to eat at places that seem remotely dirty.

            9 Replies
            1. re: ShinyCake
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              zfwp RE: ShinyCake Nov 8, 2012 08:01 AM

              hmmmm, while hortensia and miguel run a good operation it is in a run down neighborhood. my guess is that your mother may not be ready...

              1. re: zfwp
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                ShinyCake RE: zfwp Nov 8, 2012 08:05 AM

                She's OK with the neighborhood; we eat at Little Szechuan and On's Thai. Does the restaurant seem sparkling clean?

                1. re: ShinyCake
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                  zfwp RE: ShinyCake Nov 8, 2012 08:08 AM

                  if she likes On's i think she will be OK with Homi...

                  1. re: zfwp
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                    ShinyCake RE: zfwp Nov 8, 2012 08:24 AM

                    Thanks!

                    1. re: ShinyCake
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                      Brad Ballinger RE: ShinyCake Nov 8, 2012 06:24 PM

                      On's dining room is much nicer than the dining room at Homi. Homi isn't dirty by any stretch. If you've been to Cheng Heng, I would compare the dining room to that.

                      1. re: Brad Ballinger
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                        zfwp RE: Brad Ballinger Nov 9, 2012 06:20 AM

                        the problem i have addressing the question is this: these are little business that operate on very limited funds so they are driven into questionable pieces of real estate. these people clean up the buildings to the best of their ability and limited finances and then start selling great food. the surroundings are never going to appeal to many criterion. i myself think the food trumps all.

                        1. re: zfwp
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                          ShinyCake RE: zfwp Nov 9, 2012 08:01 AM

                          I totally agree that food trumps all, but I know that's not the case for my mom.

                          We decided on Foxy Falafel for tonight, but I hope to visit Homi soon, with or without her. Thanks for all the info, folks.

                2. re: zfwp
                  EricShawnSmith RE: zfwp Nov 9, 2012 07:50 AM

                  Let's not scare away potential new customers. While the neighborhood is nothing like let's say Linden Hills, it is certainly nothing like North Minneapolis.

                  1. re: EricShawnSmith
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                    Freeze666 RE: EricShawnSmith Nov 9, 2012 09:49 AM

                    Agreed. It's not a dangerous area, the worst thing you have to worry about is the construction on University Ave. You're not going to put yourself at risk by going to Homi.

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                JimGrinsfelder RE: Freeze666 Nov 16, 2012 12:51 PM

                Went to Homi for lunch the other day.

                Orderd Guac + Chips, Chicken Enchiladas in Rojo and Caldo de Camaron.

                The Guac was amazing. Made to order. Terrific. She asked if we wanted onion and cilantro and tomato in the Guac and customized to our prefs (meetings in afternoon with customers, so no onions).

                The Caldo was ambitious, but disappointed me. Maybe I just don't get it. The shrimp were fine, head on and cooked properly, not overdone, but the broth wasn't very tasty.

                The Enchiladas were in between the Caldo and the Guac. The tortillas served with were good. I'd like to go back and get the Chilaquiles (and Guac) next time.

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                  steve_in_stpaul RE: Freeze666 May 2, 2013 07:00 AM

                  Just on the borderline of necroposting, but we finally got to Homi last night. What on earth took us so long?? Living so close to West St. Paul, I guess...

                  Anyway, I will echo Mr. Grinsfelder's comments on the guacamole -- the best any of the three of us have ever eaten. I *loved* my Tinga de Pollo and the Chilis Rellenos and Empanadas were well-received. Good good stuff and we'll be back.

                  Hortensia did say they would be offering a Cinco de Mayo buffet this weekend; she didn't specify the exact menu, but apparently there will be two "seatings" for each meal on Saturday and Sunday: lunch 11:00 am & 1:30 pm and dinner 5:30 pm & 7:00 pm. We may be back there by then, depending on weekend plans....

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: steve_in_stpaul
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                    stepawayfromthetable RE: steve_in_stpaul May 2, 2013 04:57 PM

                    I've got to remember Homi. I went there when it first opened and a couple take-outs afterwards. I need to get back for the chili rellenos among other things! I'm not a fan of the inside but I definitely am of the food.

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