Mexican restaurant in the Green Community 4 Reviews
‘See you soon when we’ve got our alcohol licence,’ the waiter said as we left the building. Apparently the prized document will be arriving in the next few weeks. For Fibber Magee’s, the Irish pub also in the Green Community and also – at the time of going to press – awaiting a licence, a few weeks must seem like an eternity. Fibber’s must be the only Irish pub in the history of drinking that won’t sell you a beer. They might just need the luck of the Irish because we’ve heard the ‘few weeks’ story before. When we went to the Velvet Lounge at Dubai Marina in the first week of 2006, the waitress said the licence would take a few days. Six months later and they still haven’t served a drop of alcohol. Unlicenced but undeterred, Casa Maria’s – a convincing body double for its sister restaurant Maria Bonita’s in Umm Sequiem – has everything else in place.
Near an unused piñata head and a Mexican flag draped over a fridge, we sat on tree trunk stools and admired the wall art reclaimed from MB’s unsuccessful Beach Road branch. After dunking far too many golden tortilla chips into exquisite salsas, all washed down with horchata (cinnamon rice drink), we tucked into soups. The tortilla soup was full of floating flour tortillas, chunks of avocado, cheese and chilli, and the cilantro soup was zinging with coriander and full of melting cheese.
Made with crisp browned flour tortillas, loaded with crumbly, potently spiced grilled beef steak, and surrounded by refried beans, Mexican rice (with tomatoes and spices) and sour cream, the burritos are by far the best in Dubai. Meanwhile, forming a striking tricolour agonisingly one colour away from the Mexican flag, three types of sauce – ranchero red, salsa verde green and chilli chocolate mole – covered the enchiladas trio. But it was only a mixed success. While the sauces delicately stroked a measured dose of tingliness into the tortillas, the chicken filling was disappointingly plain. The mole quesadilla, although better than it sounds, nevertheless combines chocolate with chicken and chilli.
With a bit of luck Casa Maria’s will soon be serving Coronas and margarita cocktails with their authentic Mexican food and there’ll be only a mariachi band away from the perfect night out.
The bill (for two)
Sopa de tortilla Dhs20
Sopa de cilantro Dhs20
Grilled steak burrito Dhs38
Enchiladas combo Dhs40
Total (ex service) Dhs143
By Time Out Dubai
Time Out reviews restaurants anonymously and pays for meals. Of course, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or independence of user reviews.