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Inside are mostly high-top communal tables and a few for small groups. Orange-brown walls are adorned with beer-branded mirrors and the work of a local artist. A large window offers a glimpse into the stainless-steel kitchen. Above the bar hang three-dimensional iron star lamps that, along with strings of multicolored lights, shed a cool glow throughout the restaurant.
The large bar, with myriad tequila bottles sitting behind it, teased us to order a drink. Our waitress' mention of two-for-one margaritas ($6) along with Taco Tuesday sealed the deal. She even had the good sense to ask whether we preferred them with or without salt. One with, one without, we said, and moments later, ice-cold goblets arrived. Even with house tequila, the margaritas were mellow and the bartender had the know-how to add just enough sour mix so as not to leave our faces puckering.
"We make our own sour mix," Lee said. "It's not from a soda gun."
2045 Wilton Drive
Wilton Manors, FL 33305
Region: Wilton Manors
Pinche Taqueria, 2045 Wilton Drive, Wilton Manors; 954-990-6282; pinchetaqueria.us. Sunday to Thursday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 11:30p.m.
Chicken tortilla soup $4
Fish tacos Baja-style $4
Braised lamb tacos $4
Carnitas burrito $8
Brisket rancheros $12
Like Pinche's tacos, some items had small mistakes that threw off the entire dish. Chicken tortilla soup ($4) came in a red clay bowl full of tender pulled chicken topped with fresh chunks of avocado, tortilla strips, and cilantro sprigs. Yet the broth was way too salty. Had it been any saltier, the hearty bowl would have been inedible.
Not everything was a miss, though.
Brisket rancheros ($12) were a pair of rolled-up corn tortillas filled with melting beef. The tough cut was seasoned with ancho peppers, garlic, cumin, and oregano, then braised for six hours in beef stock, tomato, onion, and Coca-Cola. The enchiladas were topped with a spicy tomato sauce, cheese, and more cilantro. We ended up unfurling the tortillas — which Lee later confirmed were brought in, not made in-house — and polishing off the meat with the accompanying long grain rice and chunky refried pinto beans.
Protein, this time carnitas, was again the highlight of the burrito, which we ordered without the tortilla as a low-carb bowl (a Chipotle knockoff). A pile of tender, juicy pork shoulder was cooked confit-mojo style with sour orange, bay leaf, and garlic and served atop rice, chopped onion, and tomato with a smear of refried bean clinging to the plate. The meat fell apart with just the touch of a fork and quickly disappeared.
In between bites, we were entertained by a group loudly celebrating a birthday with an endless cascade of margaritas.