Friday, February 18, 2011

Restaurant Review: La Taquizza

Last night we found ourselves tired and hungry after our day of birthday party planning, and neither of us felt like cooking.  On a whim, we decided to try a Mexican restaurant that we've passed by almost every day for the last two years.  La Taquizza is a small family run restaurant with an extensive menu.  Their online menu does not list all of the options that are found in the restaurant.  The restaurant is an open, family-friendly spot.  All but one table was occupied with parents and children when we were there.  Their motto is "...a place where you can eat good, eat healthy, eat happy".

The decor sets the mood. The colourful walls display Mexican statues, tapestries and ponchos, but the effect is laid back and comforting rather than tacky and overpowering.  The owner hails from Mexico City, and was personally serving the tables.  He quickly made friends with our son and even got him dancing in his high chair to the music while waiting for his meal.

The food?  Really, really good.  And much of it gluten free.  Traditional Mexican food uses more corn than wheat flour, but it's not uncommon to see a mixture of the two.  The menu specifically indicated which flours were used in which dishes, and there were many dairy free options as well.  We started the meal with the in-house tortilla chips and guacamole.  The guacamole was a soft green with the perfect accents of lime and salt, and the tortilla chips were light and crispy.  My son had quickly claimed the bowl of chips for himself.

We ordered Mexican rice and refried beans for the little one, both of which he used as dips for his tortilla chips.  None went to waste.  My husband ordered the Sopa Azteca, a broth based soup with chicken, hominy corn and tortilla strips.  He followed that up with beef tacos.  The tacos come plain, and patrons garnish their own from a variety of homemade sauces.  The tortillas are thicker than the ones found in most grocery stores, and have more texture as well. 

I ordered the chicken mole enchiladas.  Corn tortillas stuffed with pulled chicken and smothered in a chocolate sauce.  Mole is not sweet like milk chocolate, but is a sauce made from cocoa and infused with tomatoes, chilies and a variety of spices.  The sauce was the best I've had, and the chicken was moist and flavourful.  The dish came with beans and rice.  The dish is a little heavy, so perhaps next time I'll order a salad on the side, perhaps the cactus salad that looked so appealing in the photo. Unfortunately we were too full for dessert, but online reviews are claiming that their tres leches cake is something special.  It's my husband's favourite, so I'm sure he'll want to go back to try it. 

This is definitely a place that will get our repeat business.  The atmosphere was relaxed and very family friendly, and the food was authentic and delicious.  It's not a cheap hole in the wall place with greasy food, so it's not the place to go if you're looking for a $2 burrito.  If, however, you're looking for a family friendly restaurant that services authentic Mexican food in a relaxed atmosphere, this is the place for you.

La Taquizza
3175 Rutherford Road, Unit 28
Vaughan, Ontario

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