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Old 10-17-2009, 03:02 PM
 
Location: The Land Mass Between NOLA and Mobile, AL
1,796 posts, read 1,293,539 times
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Recently people were looking for Mexican food, and last night I found and tried Casa Maya in Gillette (by the Great Swamp). Here is my report:

Table salsa: Very fresh, oniony, with cilantro, jalapeno, and serrano all accounted for. The chips were store bought, but fine with the salsa.

Cheese chile rellenos: Very good, with a nice batter and cheese to poblano ratio. I had them with the verde sauce, which the menu claims is spicier than the rojo. It was nothing I couldn't handle in terms of spice level.

Beef and chicken tamales: These were also good. The masa was slightly sweeter than what I'm used to, and the fillings were lightly spiced. They were made the "cheater" way, which means that the masa was precooked in the husks, and then the husks were cut so the filling can be added on a to order basis. Tamales are labor intensive to make, and this short cut didn't seem to make a big difference.

Overall, I was pleasantly surprised. It's BYOB.
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Old 10-17-2009, 11:13 PM
 
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I've always wondered about that place! Thanks.
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Old 10-18-2009, 01:19 AM
 
Location: The Land Mass Between NOLA and Mobile, AL
1,796 posts, read 1,293,539 times
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Compared to places in Texas, it is really pretty good, though it is not Tex-Mex (that's an entirely different cuisine). My boyfriend kept rubbing his tummy while we were eating, which is always a good sign, as he is from San Antonio. The only caveat I would add is that it is Mexican Sonaran style. What that means is that the cuisine is more southerin Baja style rather than Tex-Mex. It was good--there's a lot of seafood on the menu--typical Sonoran.
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:23 AM
 
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98% of the time i go i get the steak ranchero yummy
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:24 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
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I'll try it. I like Baja and Sonoran (and most of all, New Mexican) much more than tex-mex. When I go to Austin I opt for barbecue or Hut's or even Whataburger, and I skip the mexican/tex-mex there because it just doesn't appeal to me nearly as much as what I get in So. Cal, Nevada, Arizona, and New Mexico. Although in San Antonio there seems to be much better Mexican food than Austin.

Anyway, it's worth trying this new place, especially if they have fish tacos, I'd be curious if they might have a good fish taco, something I have yet to find anywhere in the northeast, aside from Baja Fresh.
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Old 10-18-2009, 11:08 PM
 
Location: The Land Mass Between NOLA and Mobile, AL
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BCJ, if you go to Austin again, you absolutely must order a burger at Casino El Camino, which is a dive bar on 6th St. close to I-35. They are really, really good, and they'll cook them to your specs. If you say medium, your burger will be juicy and pink in the center. The clientele ranges from the tattooed bikerish set to the equally though differently tattooed hipsterish set. An added bonus is the jukebox--you got your Johnny Cash and Graham Parsons right next to your Decemberists.

And you're right about Mexican in Austin v. San Antonio, though there is good Mexican to be had in Austin. You have to be willing to venture E. of I-35, which is widely considered (by white middle-class people) to contain Austin's bad neighborhoods, but which actually merely contains working-class neighborhoods with a few drug/hooker corners here and there. (I'm talking about the same kind of stuff that people post here when someone even mentions Elizabeth/Newark/Paterson--you know what I mean).

As for BBQ, you do know that the little towns around Austin have the best 'cue, right? Be sure to make the short trek to Lockhart and Luling. And have your hungry on, and order sausage, brisket, and ribs at all the places and compare and contrast: Smith's, Kreuz's, and Cooper's. Much internet ink has been spilled debating which of these are the best, but they are all really good, with variations based on the day of the week and who happened to be manning (or womaning) the pit. In Austin itself, go to Sam's on E. 12th--it's really seedy, but in a good way--and try the mutton if you're up for it, ribs if you're not. Mmm, mmm good. As I've said elsewhere, though I'm a skinny white girl who weighs 105 lbs. soaking wet, I love to eat! I'll take food recs wherever I can get them.

PM me if you go to Austin in the future, and I'll set you up.
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Old 10-19-2009, 08:43 AM
 
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What about Toro Loco in South Orange NJ?
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Old 10-19-2009, 09:44 AM
 
Location: New Jersey
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There is also one in High Bridge. It's the same owner and that one is also very good. Good food at a great price and byob is always a plus in my book
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Old 10-19-2009, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Redneckville, NJ
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I have never been to that location of Casa Maya, we go to the one in High Bridge. It is very good, do wish they had a liquor license though.
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Old 10-19-2009, 10:48 AM
 
Location: New Jersey
4,085 posts, read 7,451,997 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diva360 View Post
BCJ, if you go to Austin again, you absolutely must order a burger at Casino El Camino, which is a dive bar on 6th St. close to I-35. They are really, really good, and they'll cook them to your specs. If you say medium, your burger will be juicy and pink in the center. The clientele ranges from the tattooed bikerish set to the equally though differently tattooed hipsterish set. An added bonus is the jukebox--you got your Johnny Cash and Graham Parsons right next to your Decemberists.

And you're right about Mexican in Austin v. San Antonio, though there is good Mexican to be had in Austin. You have to be willing to venture E. of I-35, which is widely considered (by white middle-class people) to contain Austin's bad neighborhoods, but which actually merely contains working-class neighborhoods with a few drug/hooker corners here and there. (I'm talking about the same kind of stuff that people post here when someone even mentions Elizabeth/Newark/Paterson--you know what I mean).

As for BBQ, you do know that the little towns around Austin have the best 'cue, right? Be sure to make the short trek to Lockhart and Luling. And have your hungry on, and order sausage, brisket, and ribs at all the places and compare and contrast: Smith's, Kreuz's, and Cooper's. Much internet ink has been spilled debating which of these are the best, but they are all really good, with variations based on the day of the week and who happened to be manning (or womaning) the pit. In Austin itself, go to Sam's on E. 12th--it's really seedy, but in a good way--and try the mutton if you're up for it, ribs if you're not. Mmm, mmm good. As I've said elsewhere, though I'm a skinny white girl who weighs 105 lbs. soaking wet, I love to eat! I'll take food recs wherever I can get them.

PM me if you go to Austin in the future, and I'll set you up.
Thanks, diva, for all the good suggestions. If I get to Austin soon I'll let you know; I hope I get a chance to go, it's been a couple years since I've been there.

I always end up at the Doubletree on 15th st., right across from the Texas Chili Parlor, which is OK but not as great as I expected. I think I've been to Casino El Camino for a drink but not for the burger - had I known they were known for good burgers I'd have tried one.

I used to enjoy Stubb's, they had good 'cue and good live music and it was a nice place.

My favorite barbecue was County Line in Austin and Black's in Lockhart. I've had Kreuz's but I liked Black's much, much more. I also have been to Salt-lick, I went to one in Round Rock as well as the one in Austin; it was good, but I liked County Line better, for their ribs.

I would sometimes have to drive out to Houston (I didn't have to drive, I could have flown, but I definitely preferred driving) and I would stop off at Black's (usually on the way back), or I would drive down to San Antonio and spend the day and then off to Houston.

Fun town, Austin - I always enjoy going back.

Only mistake I ever made was trying to have a good Middle Eastern meal there... Just didn't work, it was pretty bad.

Although, a couple times I did enjoy Katz's pastrami - it's not as good as the NYC Katz's (or Harold's in NJ) but it was a good change of pace to have brisket in the form of Jewish deli pastrami as opposed to barbecue. I tried to figure out if they are connected to Katz's in NYC, but there was no definite connection; best I could figure was that he is related to the Katz's deli family of NYC, but moved to Austin and started his own, maybe even had a falling out over business with his family in NY??? Hard to tell.
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