By: Wela Quan and Ethan Shen
The first time Ethan and I went to Rosa Mexicano was over a year ago for some drinks and appetizers with friends. We went to the Union Square location -- and we loved the restaurant’s high ceilings and open atmosphere because we’re both from places with wide spaces (Texas and Alberta). The margaritas were great, the guacamole passed our litmus test, and the menu looked solid, so we already knew we’d have to return someday to relax in the comfortable surroundings with a full meal.
Our vague memories were blown away when we finally made our way back last week. Rosa Mexicano has completely revamped their menu and redefined what we know as Mexican food in two ways: first, it focuses on smaller sharing plates (as opposed to normally gigantic portions) and second, it focuses on new combinations of flavors and ingredients. This refined approach to Mexican was refreshing in that it allowed us to try several different unique dishes without having to commit to a single plate of tacos, enchiladas or fajitas.
Our dinner started off with a refreshing pomegranate margarita, a new margarita flavor added just in time for spring. Following this, we snacked on chips and guacamole, which was as good as we remember. It was a battle to stop ourselves from filling up on the guac, and our restraint was rewarded by the parade of different delectable tacos that came next! First on the tasting menu was the Tacos de Hamachi, a mini hard shell taco filled with yellowtail and topped with bacon, serrano chili, arugula and crema. So delicious!
Rosa Mexicano (Union Square)9 East 18th Street
New York, NY 10003