New joint for those Juans fonda Mexican cuisine
Mexican food is always a fun and flavorful crowd pleaser, so it is no surprise several restaurants have sprung up in the city over the past few years offering the North American country’s cuisine.
The latest newcomer, Chihuahua, has set up bringing a much more casual vibe with a focus on familiar staples with a genuine Mexican flavor. The restaurant is more of a neighborhood fonda. A fonda in Mexico usually refers to a small, family-run restaurant, serving delicious, simple food that is made with love. And after biting into one of their tacos you will feel as if you have been transported back to a neighborhood fonda in Mexico.
“Made with lots of amor” is a neon sign placed on the restaurant’s wall, showing the team’s great passion for its fare.
There are several partners involved in the new establishment on Xinzha Road. Estefania Casas is the creative mind behind the new concept. The Mexican native, originally from Guadalajara, said Chihuahua is a casual, chilled spot where you can enjoy the experience without breaking your pocket.
“The core principle of Chihuahua is to provide unpretentious, tasty and affordable tacos and burritos, like any fonda in Mexico,” she said.
Casas has been working in the city’s food and beverage industry for eight years, managing different restaurants but she always wanted to open her own spot.
“I grew up helping my grandma and auntie sell tamales and tortas in our city. Back then, I was already in love with the food scene, but I was too young to understand that,” she said.
“Chihuahua was meant to happen someday, somehow. The recipes remind me of home, though someone who grew up in California, Austin or another part of Mexico will have a different perspective, and that’s fine,” Casas said.
Not only does the food remind diners of Mexico, the interior is reminiscent of a beach bar-bistro.
It is decorated in a light blue and yellow color theme, giving off a happy, cheerful mood. The interior’s wooden wall panels and tile patterns are inspired by Casas’ hometown.
The buzz is strong even on a weekday night. The menu is compact but full of delicious options, including nachos, burritos, quesadillas and tacos.
“All the tacos we offer are well-known, but I have my favorites: barbacoa, chicken chipotle and pastor, once again, all grandma’s recipes,” Casas said.
The experienced restaurateur said the small menu helps the team to offer consistent, fresh food. The Mexican cocktails are inseparable part of a fun experience. Try their micheladas, served in a chilled, salt-rimmed glass — a beer cocktail that’s a zesty mix of corona beer, lime juice and assorted sauces.
Chihuahua offers happy hour from 5pm to 8pm, Tuesday to Thursday on selected drinks — don’t miss out.
Opening hours: 11am-midnight (Tuesday to Saturday); 11am-7pm (Sunday)
Address: 2/F, 1788 Xinzha Rd
Average price: 120 yuan