Wednesday, October 26, 2011

This fish taco blogger really wanted to love you

Located in the Southampton neighborhood of Saint Louis, Lily's is a family-owned, family-run restaurant that touts itself as serving "home-style" Mexican food. So I wanted to love it. I was ready for a hole-in-the-wall establishment with some quirks, but I was also expecting some great flavors. You walk in and place your order at the counter and get handed a cafeteria tray with empty cups, silverware and a basket of chips. You fill your own drinks and grab salsa from the plastic tubs sitting lopsidedly in ice. The decor in this place includes random Mexican objects, a metal cart against a wall that serves as the bar, an assortment of U.S. Marine paraphernalia and lovely family photos (including ones of the Marine son who looks strikingly like his mother).

There were two fishy options to be had and my friend and I tried them both. The fish taco and shrimp taco plates both come with your choice of corn or flour tortilla (though we ordered corn and got flour instead) and are served with rice, homemade potato chips (odd, I know) and pico de gallo with cabbage. The fish taco had a whole piece of fish on it - I would guess Tilapia. It had some nice flavors to it, although certainly no kick. But it was the only thing on that four tortilla and looked rather sad and lonely. Adding the pico de gallo cabbage helped, but the whole thing was still on the dry side. Next, I tried adding the several available varieties of homemade salsa. The roasted one was especially interesting, but definitely on the watery side, so it too did not really improve matters. The shrimp tacos had much more interesting flavors but were way too salty. So I was underwhelmed with blandness. Sorry Lily's, maybe I should have had one of those famed margaritas of yours.

Lily's Mexican
4601 S. Kingshighway Blvd.
Saint Louis, MO 63109
(314) 352-1894

2.5 out of 5 fishies.

Friday, October 14, 2011

A fab video lesson of how to warm your corn tortillas

Do you pop your tortillas in the microwave? Heat them over a gas burner? Check out this ingenious method courtesy of Serious Eats!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Art of the Taco

Check out these fancy tacos from Bobby Flay's The Art of the Taco event at the New York City Wine and Food Festival. More than 30 chefs crafted their own take on the taco: from traditional to inventive. Serious East put together a slideshow of their top twelve. One of their favorites was from a fab place I reviewed in NYC: Hecho en Dumbo. But check out that scrumptious looking oyster taco from Riverpark!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Where's the fish?

Flying through DFW and wishing the Urban Taco I stopped at had fishy options on their menu... their chicken tinga and al pastor tacos were quite tasty and only $3 each (not bad for airport prices).

This fish taco blogger heads down to Texas

Howdy from west Texas y'all. Not being a native, I cannot eat pulled pork sandwiches and steak fries on a daily basis, so I recently headed to Fuzzy's Taco Shop for somewhat lighter grub. This self touted "Baja Style" joint had three fishy tacos on their menu - fish (grilled or tempura), shrimp (grilled or tempura) and crawfish. All tacos come on your choice of corn or flour tortillas, served soft or crispy (c'mon, that's just wrong). The fixins are lettuce, feta cheese, a garlic sauce and tomato. Now I thought everything was supposed to be big in Texas, however that seems to compete with the fact that everything in Lubbock has to be cheap to keep the college folk happy. Instead of substantial pieces of fish, these tacos come with a piddlee'o amount of little nuggets of fish. But at $1.99 each, can you really complain? The tacos are still quite large in size, with a lot of filler to bulk them up (mainly consisting of lettuce). The tempura batter is just a fancy way to say fried, and the fish underneath was decent, but nothing to write home about. The grilled shrimp was bland and to be avoided. However, the crawfish tacos were quite tasty - lots of flavor and a surprising sweetness to them. The garlic sauce in the tacos was boring and watery, but the feta cheese (a surprising choice) added a lot of flavor. And you can spice up any taco with their very hot habanero hot sauce. So get down to Fuzzy's Taco Shop (see here for its many locations) and cool the seat of your saddle. And be sure to get a strong and palatable $4 brain-freeze Texas-sized margarita while here!

2102 Broadway
Lubbock, TX 79401
(806) 740-8226

3 out of 5 fishies.