drive-by Mexican

At the very last minute last week, I was invited out to Mamasita which has newly opened in the Paris end of Collins St in the city. Thanks very much fellow foodie @praxxis for thinking of me. If I recall correctly, it only opened last week, on Tuesday. Melbourne Gastronome has posted comprehensively about it, and I’d heard tidbits about it from fellow foodie @jeroxie, and @nedwin.

You’ll have to excuse my photos as the place was pretty dark and these are courtesy of my mobile phone. Real professional-like, eh?

I’ll keep my report brief, and please do note that because of the time I dined there, choices were largely restricted to tapas offerings – they do have a larger lunch and dinner menu that I hope to investigate later on.

My supreme favourite for the evening, the octopus and prawn ceviche.

ceviche 'leche de tigre'

Tart, refreshing, and wonderfully fresh seafood make this fairly simple dish a gustatory treat! Definite pick-me-up for the palate. My mouth waters just to recall it. I like to think of it as an extremely sophisticated seafood salad of sorts.

Next up, mushroom and truffle quesadillas.

quesadilla de huitlacoche

A much more subtle dish, palate-wise. It’s great that it’s shareable too. It will take all your politeness to make sure you don’t sneak an extra slice that wasn’t really meant for you…ooh yeah.

The next photo shows what was actually on the table just as I arrived a tostada share plate. I also witnessed poor @coliwilso and @tristankenney somewhat overcome by chilli sauce overload. T bore it better than C who at one stage looked like he was going to hurl. Poor lad looked far too unwell for the episode to be funny. @praxxis, who sat there with his arms crossed somewhat smugly, implored that this chilli misdemeanour make it into this post, and I have happily obliged. I did remark on the evening that I had never seen either fellow so quiet in a social situation. I entered to practically no greeting!

Moral of the story is, the red chilli sauce is much hotter than the green one – so folks, no matter how hard-arse you are, please use them sparingly!

tostada serving plate of four

My favourites out of this lot are the: the one on the very left – “de Pescado” with market fish with lime, guacamole, nasturtiums & serrano chilli, and then “de Pulpo”: pickled octopus with green chilli, lime and coriander.

Of course, while there, I tried two of the Mexican beers on offer – the Tecate, and the Dos Equis. I much preferred the Tecate, as the Dos Equis is a little too light and watery for my tastes. I don’t really know much about Mexican beer, but I’m always game to try ones I’ve never had. Thankfully, not a Corona in sight! Yes, you did just witness some beer snobbery from me: on a more serious note, if you enjoy Corona, then by all means, drink it!

I wish there were more places that served late-night nibbles of such a high calibre – Melbourne is pretty food-obsessed, so why aren’t there more such places? I know once I start drinking at bars I get insanely peckish. In any case, I’m glad Mamasita has popped up and can’t wait to go again and order some of the lunch/dinner items. Barring the tostada, everything I had when I was there was actually off the tapas menu.

You bet I’ll be going again.

Mamasita on Urbanspoon

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8 thoughts on “drive-by Mexican

  1. penny aka jeroxie

    I am not keen about this place though. It aint the gritty mexican. The flavours aren’t too punchy for me. Having said that this place has mixed reviews. Some like it and some don’t. But at least you had a fab time 🙂

  2. Gem

    @jeroxie I loved it! Interesting, I haven’t actually heard any negative reviews of Mamasita – it seems to be Melbourne’s darling at the moment. @Ryan you only need to say when… 🙂

  3. Robert

    Mixed reviews? You must be thinking of somewhere else.We’ve been looking forward to this place since we first read it was opening – La Esquina was our favourite restaurant in NYC, so much so that we went back 3 times in two weeks, and that’s where Matt Lane earned his Mexican stripes.Mama Sita lived up to expectations. Because we made a booking well before it opened, Matt found space for 18 of us (the regular maximum is 12) and everyone loved it.The food is fresh and tasty, and they have gone to great lengths to source authentic ingredients or appropriate substitutes (for example, Kefalograviera cheese on the grilled corn.) Highlights include the corn, the chicken/mole, and the mint flan. The Mama Sita Margherita was delicious (and they seemed to get stronger as the night went on).Definitely going back. Next up: midnight tacos.CORN!(My only nitpick with your review is that the green sauce is definitely hotter than the red. We had a bit of a debate on the night and that was the consensus — confirmed later on Wikipedia.)

  4. Gem

    Hi Rob,I’ve yet to try the mint flan and the chicken/mole, but heard others speak highly of it, so it’s definitely on the order list next visit (and there *will* be a next visit). Perhaps it really was just our minds playing tricks on us, but three of us who tasted the chilli sauces swore that the red was hotter! Mind you, I did try the red first, and noticed that the tiny spot on my tongue where I put the green sauce felt warmer, so what you say makes sense. I wasn’t game to have as much of the green as the red. Cannot wait to go back, and I do want to try their margaritas and tequila. It feels like too long ago since I was there!

  5. Gem

    @food lover just read your review on it, actually, and have posted a comment. Need to organise a trip to go back.

  6. Pingback: eat, drink, stagger » hipster free tacos

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