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Showing posts with label Tex Mex. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tex Mex. Show all posts

Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food


6000 Universal Blvd.
Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 224-3663
View Website Here



Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food is one of many dining options available at Universal City Walk. Although the decor is very lively and fun, It certainly is very far from being Authentic. That’s not necessarily a bad thing thing though.

The food that is served up is pretty decent for the most part, and some things can be hit or miss, but let’s face it...this in the heart of a huge tourist area. While I wouldn't go so far as to say it’s a tourist trap, it is a place that I’m ok with not being fully authentic.

Once you step inside of Antojitos, you will find a lively fiesta vibe with neon lights, loud music, and array of decorations that get you into party mode. 

The bar has plenty of cocktails and tequila creations like the “Blood Orange Margarita” or the “Horse You Rode In On” made with Herradura Reposado Tequila, Ginger Beer, Amarena Black Cherry and Simple Syrup. They also have a very extensive line up of tequila by the shot that range from $5.00 to $60.00 for a shot of Casa Dragones.

The menu features made from scratch Mexican street fare with flavorful favorites like tacos, empanadas, and fajitas with traditional creations like hearty Mar y Tierra Stew and bright Mahi Veracruzana. Some items are just not quite authentic, are more of an artistic expression of what that dish should be.

The Chips and Salsa were pretty much standard fare for any Tex-Mex place. The salsa was a tad bland, but not too bad.

A Tropical Mojito on the Left and The Horse you rode in on the right made with Herradura Reposado Tequila, Ginger Beer, Amarena Black Cherry and Simple Syrup.

The bar is a focal point as soon as you walk into Antojitos and it has pretty cool vibe with lots of neon lights.

Queso Fundido La Generala is made with Menonita Cheese topped with chorizo sausage and ancho spice, served with warm flour tortillas.

The Carnitas were really good with beer braised chili pork, salsa verde, guacamole, queso fresco, grilled Serrano chili, black beans and house rice, but for the price of $16.95, the portion was underwhelming.

We really enjoyed the Churrasco that is composed of skirt steak, ancho, chimichurri, grilled chorizo, black bean puree, house rice and crispy chile onions. This was very tender and flavorful and had adequate portions.

As I said earlier, some things are hit or miss here, and they try to do too much with artistic expression. This is the Tamales at Antojitos and they were rather strange. They made them as a souffle, and I get the idea they were going for...the flavors were there, but it lacked the ultimate flavor of a good Tamale with a good homemade corn tortilla. Interesting, but missed the mark.

Inside of Antojitos is very spacious and open with a few different dining areas.

With live Mariachi music setting the tone on select nights, Neon Lights galore and a crazy atmosphere this is a festive dining experience every day of the week. The food is good and you will have a good time here, just don't expect authentic Mexican as the name suggests.

Antojitos is open Sunday to Thursday from 3:00 pm to Midnight, and Friday to Saturday from 3:00 pm to 1:00 am.

Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Cinco Tacos + Tequila


140 N. Orlando Ave.
Winter Park, FL 32789
407-725-7100
View Website Here


In the land of Tacos and Tex-Mexerys opening up on what seems like a weekly basis in Orlando, what could be better than another taco and Tex-Mex spot right? 

Only this time we are going to make it a more upscale persuasion and call it Cinco Tacos + Tequila.

Cinco is all about bold flavors, varied textures and delicious aromas from a scratch kitchen and a colorful decor with the sound of diners laughing together. Cinco Tacos + Tequila has a main goal of bringing a total sensory experience to the Winter Park restaurant scene.

The new eatery has opened up at the former site of Carmel Kitchen, 140 N. Orlando Ave with a Cali Mex concept, taking the flavors of favorite Mexican dishes and adding an artistic twist.

Signature dishes at Cinco include: Tableside Guacamole, Adobo Fried Chicken, Pizza Stand Nachos, Fajita Chimichanga Samosas, made-to-order desserts and an impressive assortment of street tacos.

Of course, complimentary chips and salsa will begin every meal. But the new concept isn’t just focused on excellent dining. The restaurant also has a fun, upbeat vibe with plenty of signature drinks to set the mood. The bar offers mixologist inspired takes on the classic margarita while still boasting an impressive list of more traditional cocktails.

The complimentary chips and house made salsa were a decent way to get started.

A pair of House Margaritas made with Sauza Tequila and house made sour mix were pretty smooth.

Ceviche de Camarones, or a fancy Shrimp Ceviche is made with fresh shrimp served on top of sliced cucumbers. These were pretty good and a great light bite appetizer.

Cinco Nachos are large and in charge and have really great flavor, with house made tortilla chips, cotija cheese, queso, chicken, lettuce, pico de gallo, sour cream, salsa and cilantro and are great for sharing.

The Grande Margarita on the left is served on the rocks with strawberries, mango, silver tequila, triple sec, fresh lime and is served over bubbling dry ice...pretty tasty and very entertaining. The Bubbly Pop on the right is a glass of Champagne with a house made fresh fruit popsicle in the glass.

Arroz con Pollo is served with seasoned and sauteed chicken breast, avocado, Mexican rice, black beans, mixed vegetables, pico de gallo, and chipotle lime crema in a fancy presentation.

The Ancho Chile Salmon was pretty impressive. It is made with wild caught salmon, ancho chile honey glaze, Mexican rice and black bean puree.

The Pop Martini with pineapple infused Vodka and a rim of pop rocks on the left and a Blue Raspberry Lemonade with Svedka Vodka blue raspberry vodka and fresh made lemonade is on the right. Both were great cocktails and fun to drink.

Here’s a nice shot of the bar at Cinco, and I will have to say, they are pretty creative with the drink menu here. Almost everything we tried was flavorful and fun to drink with great presentations and fresh flavors.

We visited during a partial soft opening, so the dessert menu was not available yet, and I was a tad disappointed that I did not get to try the Churro Donuts, or the Bannanas Foster Butter Cake, or the Lime Vanilla Creme Brulee.

Cinco has several specials planned throughout the week, including Taco Tuesday and brunch on both Saturday and Sunday. Brunch will offer diners a selection of small plates, as well as tableside mimosas and bloody marys. We really enjoyed the food and the concept here, even if there are like 10 taco and and Tex-Mex establishments in a 5 mile radius, so we hope they last and do well here.

The kitchen and Bar at Cinco opens at 11:00 am from Monday to Friday, and on Saturday and Sunday they open at 10:00 am. Friday and Saturday, the bar is open until 2:00 am, and the kitchen closes at 1:00 am.

Cinco Tacos + Tequila Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Taco Maker Mexican Grill

7790 Lake Underhill Rd.
Unit 105
Orlando, FL 32825
(407) 930-0496
View Website Here

And… we have yet another entrant into the Taco Craze currently erupting in Central Florida. More tacos, more Tex-Mex the more the merrier as some would say, maybe others are tired of it, but either way, Tacos are here to stay.... for now.

With more than 100 franchise restaurants in Puerto Rico, the Taco Maker brand has expanded into the U.S. with their concept of made to order Mexican with the introduction of Taco Maker Mexican Grill in 2014. With more than 70 franchises now sold, the team at Frans Global – who acquired the Taco Maker brand in 2006 has made its way to Orlando.

Whether it’s tacos, burritos, fajitas or dessert, the food is served fresh and with passion. The menus are full of savory and customizable Mexican food options to fit any taste and any diet. Taco Maker features beef and chicken fajitas and fresh made on site guacamole, tortillas and chips as well as fresh made sauces with over 20 fresh ingredients to choose from. 

Inside is pretty open and spacious. Guests walk up, place their order and customize it as they go through the line and seat themselves, Fast-Casual at its core. 

Guests have a variety of toppings and options to fully customize their orders as they go through the line.

Mexican Grill Bowl with seasoned ground beef and Mexican rice and a Jarritos Lime soda.

A Quesadilla Platter.

This is a taco salad that is fully customizable and served in a house made deep fried tortilla. This was filled with Chicken Criollo. Proteins available here are Ground Beef, Chicken Criollo, Steak Fajita, Chicken Fajita or Pork Carnitas.

A Taco Trio Platter with Chicken, Carnitas and Ground Beef with black beans, chips and Mexican rice.

The Grande Platter I ordered came with a taco and a burrito, so I got the burrito stuffed with carnitas, and went with the ground beef for the taco. The carnitas were very flavorful and really good for a fast casual place, but they do make it everyday in house. 

The Apple or Cherry Pies are deep fried tortillas with apple or cherry filling and sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon...what’s not to like?

Of course the Nutella Cheesecake Pie is pretty much a game changer. This is a deep fried flour tortilla with cheesecake and Nutella filling and sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon. They also serve Rellenitas XL, which is basically a quesadilla filled with nutella and sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar.

Overall, we really enjoyed Taco Maker. The prices are very affordable, a combo is about $9.00 here, and that includes a drink. For the freshness of the food and ease of ordering, I personally don't mind another taco spot in Orlando, as long as it’s decent food and they are not trying to hop on another food trend like some local establishments.

They have another location in Central Florida as well, at 9924 Universal Blvd.
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Cafe Rio


1040 N Orlando Ave.
Winter Park, FL 32789
(321) 422-2099
View Website Here


Cafe Rio is yet another entrant into the Fast Casual market, and of course the ever growing Taco Craze that is currently consuming Central Florida. 

Much like it’s competitors, you walk in, order a bowl, a burrito, tacos, salads or tostadas, and you pick the meats, toppings, sauces and sides while everything is put together as you go, you pay, then seat yourself and dig in. 

Cafe Rio Mexican Grill, is a fast casual restaurant chain based in Salt Lake City Utah, with branches in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Maryland, Montana, Nevada, Utah, Virginia, Washington, and Wyoming.

The Brand’s recipes are inspired from the traditional cooking styles of the Rio Grande region of Northern Mexico, Southern Texas and New Mexico. The Winter park Location is the first one in Florida.

The first thing you see when you start your order at Cafe Rio is a tortilla maker rolling freshly made dough and placing it on the comal. An essential tool in traditional Mexican cuisine for over five hundred years, the comal is what gives the tortillas their rich, deep and nutty flavor.

Cafe Rio makes their signature sauces, salsas, dressings and toppings fresh every morning, hand slicing fresh chiles, vegetables and fruits and mixing them with a blend of secret spices. From mild to “I can’t feel my tongue” hot, they have the fresh, flavorful kick for your favorite meal.

Options for ordering at Cafe Rio include, Burritos, Salads, Tacos, Enchiladas, Quesadillas, Tostadas, Nachos, Chips & Salsa, Queso, Guacamole, Tortilla Soups and a small selection of desserts.


Everything you order at Cafe Rio can be customized…Proteins, Toppings, Sauces, Beans, Etc… can all be customized after choosing your base.

We ordered an appetizer of Chips with salsa and queso and a side of the Cilantro Ranch as well as a side of Tomatillo. The queso was really good with a little heat to it.

Two Enchiladas, one with Shredded Chicken, one with Fire Roasted Chicken. Really enjoyed both, but of course the fire roasted version stole the show, but the black beans and the rice were quite tasty also.

Cafe Rio is almost as famous for their house made drinks as they are for the freshmade food. I was really impressed with the horchata and the fresh squeezed mint limeade. (I couldn't help but think that the limeade would have been dangerous with a shot of Vodka in it...We almost asked to take a gallon home!)

Two Tacos at Cafe RIo... one with Sweet Pork Barbacoa and another with Fire Roasted Steak served on house made tortillas. Both were really good, but the sweet Pork Barbacoa is ridiculously delicious.

Folks, this is indeed a Big Ass Burrito. We ordered it with the Chile Beef and topped it with enchilada sauce and extra cheese then had it baked for the win. It was large and in charge, and really good.

Here is a shot of the menu, to give you a better idea of how the ordering process goes at Cafe Rio.

There is a decent amount of seating available inside here, but they do have a nice little side patio area with umbrellas as well for additional seating.

Each day at Cafe Rio begins with a delivery of fresh fruits and vegetables, right from the farm. They hand squeeze over a thousand limes, hand scoop over a thousand avocados and they cook or grill all of their proteins and meats on site every day and prepare all the sauces, salsas and desserts fresh daily.

We really liked Cafe Rio, and think you will too. Sure, there is an ever growing taco craze going on in Central Florida right now, but what's not to love about even more tacos, burritos, enchiladas and nachos? If you are anything like me, you could probably eat TEx-Mex/Mexican food almost everyday of the week.

Cafe Rio is open everyday from 10:30 am until 10:00 pm, except Sunday, as they are open from 11:00 am to 9:00 pm.


Cafe Rio Mexican Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Rocco's Tacos and Tequila Bar

7468 W.Sand Lake Road 
(Restaurant Row)
Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 226-0550

It’s been quite a while since I’ve done a review or write up for Rocco’s Tacos. My last write up for Tastes Of Orlando was back in 2012 for Rocco’s, and lots of things have changed since then.

I have visited a few times intermittently since then for friends and family members birthday events or corporate gatherings, so I was excited at the opportunity to return and revisit for a proper blog write up.

As I said back in 2012, the one of many things I love about this location of Rocco’s is the fact that it makes me feel like have arrived at an upscale version of the bar from the movie "From Dusk till Dawn".

Do you remember that movie with George Clooney and Quentin Tarantino? It's the one where they get stuck at a crazy and wild bar on the dark side of Mexico and everyone turns into vampires. Although I never feared anyone at Rocco's turning into a vampire, the ambiance and feeling of the place certainly reminded me of the film.

Owner Rocco Mangel opened his first location in West Palm Beach in 2007, and has had quite a good following with a total of eight stores that have opened since then. The Orlando location was still in its infancy when I went for the first time in 2012, but they have maintained a steady business since then.

That is a testament to the brand and quality that owner Rocco Mangel brings to his establishments, especially when you consider how many restaurants have opened and closed in Orlando and Restaurant Row since then.

They have a few new additions to the menu and also have reinvigorated some of the old classics and kicked things up a notch now in 2018.


Inside, or Outside, both of the bars at Rocco’s are pretty impressive. This is the inside bar with just about every type and brand of tequila you can imagine.

Whether you choose to dine inside or outside, there is plenty of room, with great views no matter where you are. The inside is full of unique chandeliers, skeletons, bizarre statues and an array of interesting things to look at. Outside they have seating lakeside with a great view of Little Sand Lake and plenty of tiki torches to light up the night.

The Chips and Guacamole here have always been a favorite of mine, with guac made table side and the seasoned chips that are good by themselves.

Jalapeno Rellenos are stuffed and fried jalapeño poppers with cotija cheese, lime crema, avocado ranch and cilantro for a really good appetizer to share at the table.

Pollo Al Carbon is a generous platter from the Especiales de la Casa section of the menu with chicken, green bean and frisee salad, pickled red onions and sweet plantains.

Of course Rocco’s has the tacos as well, and they do a pretty good job of serving them up with a variety of protein options, like this platter with Chorizo, Carne Asada, and Pollo.

Camarones Patron are a cool item on the menu that I really enjoyed, with shrimp sauteéd in tequila and rojo chipotle butter sauce, padrón peppers and served with flour tortillas.

Hey… they have salads here too, and they are pretty darn good. The Ensalada de Espincaca at Rocco’s is made with blackened chicken, spinach, mixed greens, goat cheese, bacon, grilled onion and a very delicious charred jalapeno vinaigrette.

Enchiladas are always a good choice, especially these Mole Poblano ones filled with pulled chicken in adobo drenched in a mole poblano sauce.

For all you meat lovers out there, I strongly recommend the Gaucho Platter with grilled steak, chicken breast, shrimp, chorizo, chimichurri, grilled green onions, radishes and corn tortillas.

You can not go to Rocco’s Tacos and Tequila bar and not get a margarita. They make some of the best margaritas in Orlando. One of my favorites is the Cadillac Margarita made with El Mayor Anejo, Grand Marnier, and Rocco’s Housemade Sour Mix.

Back in the beginning phases of Rocco’s, Rocco himself went and scoured the globe and visited Mexico more than 20 times to get a better vision for his concept. His goal was not just getting the food right, but more importantly...to bring the best and widest selection of Tequila's in the southeast to his loyal patrons.

At any given time Rocco's can have as many as 300 different Tequila's on hand. A single shot of a lower end Tequila may cost you around $5.00, But, for the discerning customer, they have a shot of "1800 Coleccion Anejo" for a mere $250.00.

Back in his heyday, Rocco was known for visiting his establishments and donning the shoes Pee Wee Herman made famous during the “Tequila” song and dance in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure. He would jump on the bar and pour tequila shots down patrons throats and the place would go crazy.

Nowadays, Rocco Mangel is a little laid back and not as crazy as he once was. He was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis not too long ago, so he has undergone a lifestyle change, but it’s all for the better. Rocco has a made a big effort to be part of the National MS Society because as he says, he wants people to know that his life, and those of others with MS, can continue to thrive.

In addition to all the walks and fundraisers Rocco is a part of, he has also added a special drink to the menu called the MS Miracle Margarita that is made with Maestro Dobel Diamante, Cedilla Acai Liqueur, Agave Nectar, Fresh Squeezed Lime Juice, and best of all, the proceeds go entirely to The National MS Society.

I said it in 2012, and I’ll say it again... The only thing that would have made our experience better at Rocco’s Tacos, is if Salma Hayek playing the part of Santánico Pandemonium would have been our server. The food is always good here, and it’s an atmosphere that is so fun and enjoyable and they make a damn fine margarita.


Rocco's Tacos and Tequila Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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