Tag Archives: mexican food

Mony’s

20 Mar

IMG_9453.jpegLiving in Santa Barbara, there is no shortage of Mexican restaurants. However, there are limited spots that offer chips that are truly gluten-free. Mony’s in the Funk Zone only uses their fryer for their fantastic corn tortilla chips. I ordered their nachos which were described to me as enough for 3-4 people.IMG_9456.jpegWhile that may be true, I had no trouble finishing them off with minimal help from my husband. When you start with a chip that is as good as their’s, you are guaranteed to have some tasty nachos. This is the perfect quick meal to have while taking a break from exploring all of the nearby wine tasting rooms.

La Cocina

28 Aug

IMG_5894.jpgThis month, we decided to try La Cocina which is located in the same beautiful spot that Somerset and Smithy were. I was optimistic since Mexican food is typically easy for Celiacs. However, after talking to our waiter, it seemed that options were a bit limited. Even though they make their corn chips and tortillas in-house, they were not gluten-free because they fry them in contaminated oil. I asked if I could have some tortillas that they didn’t fry but that wasn’t possible for some reason. I started with the Yellowtail Ceviche. We then shared an order of the Charro Bean Dip without the chips.

IMG_5895.jpgNeither of the starting dishes were memorable. Since the tacos and enchiladas were off the table for me, I had the Carne Asada as my main dish. IMG_5897.jpegThis dish was okay but I would try something else if I returned. Sadly, it wasn’t as GF-friendly of an experience as it was when the restaurant was Smithy (remember that GF pasta?! mmmm). I love the outdoor patio here, but I don’t know if that is enough to get me to come back.

Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill

15 Jul

IMG_2144.JPGBraving the smoke in Goleta from the Whittier Fire, we decided to try Hollister Village’s newest restaurant, Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill. When I looked at their menu online before heading there, I found that they seek out organic, local ingredients which was very appealing to me. I ended up ordering the Sharky’s Quinoa Salad with tofu added on. This salad was uber healthy but filling at the same time. It had organic red and white quinoa, organic baby spinach, cabbage, jicama, cucumber, sweet peppers, green onions, cilantro, avocado and toasted flax and chia seeds. The dressing was an avocado vinaigrette. Online, they have a gluten-free menu guide which is very helpful, noting that the fryer is used for items that contain gluten.

Verde Cocina

10 Aug

ChilaquilesWhile in Portland, we ate at an entirely gluten-free restaurant called Verde Cocina. Described as having “Northwest Farm-to-Fork Ingredients with a Mexican flair”, the dishes on the brunch menu were a bit healthier than your average Mexican brunch. Everything on their menu comes with seasonal veggies. I ordered the Chilaquiles. This had eggs scrambled with pieces of their handmade corn tortillas and was topped with veggies, white bean garbanzo mash and ranchero salsa. I enjoyed it, but I might have put a little hot sauce on  it for more oomph.

Red O

29 Jun

Corn and Goat Cheese TamaleThis past week, we went to LA for a day to look for some furniture. There was a fantastic store called HD Buttercup that we fell in love with. It was like West Elm but bigger and better. After working up an appetite, we headed over to Red O, a restaurant by Rick Bayless. You may recall that we had a great experience at Frontera Grill when we were in Chicago. He obviously makes sure the staff is aware of dietary restrictions at all of his restaurants. There was plenty for me to order, but I ended up getting three of the smaller dishes. I had the Corn and Goat Cheese Tamales. These had fresh ground corn masa with roasted poblano chiles. I also had the Fresh Oysters.

Fresh OystersThe oysters were served with a tomatillo-habanero miñoneta, smoky chipotle-garlic salsa & fresh-cut limes. The last item I had was the Spicy Baja Yellowtail Aguachile. This ceviche had spicy serrano chiles, lime, red onion, avocado and cilantro oil. This was my favorite of the three items. I ate it so quickly that there was no time for a picture. As a note, the corn chips here are not GF as they are fried in contaminated oil. However, they have fresh corn tortillas available as a substitute.

Pure Taqueria

16 Apr

Shrimp TacosWhile in Atlanta, we found a Mexican restaurant with a gluten-free menu. We found our waitress at Pure Taqueria was very informed as to what we could and could not have. When she brought chips to our table, I asked about how they were fried. She knew that we could not have them as the oil was contaminated. She then offered to bring out some GF chips for a small charge. I thought that it was pretty awesome that they had the option of GF chips. I ordered their shrimp tacos with the shrimp grilled rather than fried. These had poblano slaw, chipotle mayo and cruda tomatillo salsa and were served on corn tortillas. In Santa Barbara, we have no shortage of Mexican restaurants. However, it would be great to have at least one that is this proactive in knowing about the gluten-free diet!

Del Pueblo Cafe

7 Oct

After spending some time at the Carpinteria Avocado Festival today, all we wanted for dinner was Mexican Food. We decided on Del Pueblo Cafe in Goleta. I ordered the Rajas Tacos.

These had grilled pasilla peppers and onions on two corn tortillas. They were topped with lettuce, cheese and salsa fresca. I found the colorful decorations in the restaurant really appealing. On a totally unrelated note… at the avocado festival we were able to determine that our backyard avocado tree is of the Bacon Avocado variety. Is that the best name or what?

Frontera Grill

9 Sep

The restaurant that was top on my list to try during our trip to Chitown was Frontera Grill. We love our Rick Bayless cookbook and the only salsa that we ever buy is the Frontera Chipotle Salsa. Our waiter was very good about running back to the kitchen to check if things were GF for me or not. I started with the Grill Roasted Corn with serrano mayo, cilantro and homemade fresh cheese. Holy ridiculousness. This was unbelievable. I then had the Brothy Corn Esquites.

This had sweet corn, pozole corn, rich corn broth, cilantro mayo, anejo cheese and guajillo powder. After giving this a good mix, the flavors blended nicely. We order some guacamole for the table. The chips were not GF, so I just had some with fresh corn tortillas. For my main dish, I had smoked chicken queso fundido tacos which were served with fresh corn tortillas.

The smokiness flavor from the chicken was fantastic. This would have been plenty but we also ordered some side dishes. We got the Grilled Green Beans which had to be prepared without the garlic due to cross contamination.

Without the garlic, there wasn’t as much flavor. I think it would have been better to try ordering something that didn’t need alterations. We also a side of black beans with fresh cheese.

One last note… if you are of age, and it is still on the menu, order the Summer Margarita. You are welcome.

El Taco Tequila Taqueria

7 Jun

We decided to try El Taco Tequila Taqueria tonight as we explored some stores in downtown Santa Barbara. Any restaurant that has the words “taco” and “tequila” in its name is alright by me. We shared the Poblano Relleno, a cheese stuffed poblano chili with tomato sauce served on fresh corn tortillas. These ingredients always seem to go well together. We also shared an order of the guacamole.

This was pretty straightforward. I then ordered three tacos. The first was the Camaron a la Diabla.

This was described as “spicy grilled shrimp, cabbage, crema Mexicana and cotija cheese”. I didn’t think there was anything spicy about it, but I still enjoyed it. I then had the Bistec Tampiqueño.

This was grilled rosemary garlic skirt steak with poblano chili and melted cheese. I thought this was better than the shrimp taco. My favorite item that I ordered was the Pechuga de Pollo.

The grilled chicken in this taco was really tender. The onions, poblano chili and melted cheese just enhanced the meat. Do note that if you are gluten-intolerant, you can’t have the chips. They are corn chips but they are fried in contaminated oil.

Cinco de Mayo

5 May

Happy Cinco de Mayo! To celebrate, a friend and I went to Cielito for some tequila and appetizers. The first thing we ordered was the Taco de Calabacitas. These had roasted poblano succotash, salsa verde, queso fresco, crema and cilantro. They were served on fresh corn tortillas. We also ordered the Panela en Salsa Verde.

This seared mozzarella-like cheese was topped with salsa verde, onion, cilantro and queso cotija. It was served with a stack of warmed corn tortillas. An order of guacamole complimented both dishes perfectly. Everything we had was quite tasty.