Boca Raton's The Mexican To Reopen As 101 Cantina, Gainesville's Famous Tailgate Party Restaurant

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The north Florida establishment known for annually hosting Gainesville's largest tailgate party is coming to Boca Raton, setting up shop in the Royal Palm Place space most recently occupied by Dennis Max's The Mexican.

While The Mexican recently swapped ownership -- no word on why -- it has retained much of its staff, reopening this weekend as 101 Cantina, the second location for the well-known University of Florida tequila bar and restaurant located across the street from the Gainesville campus stadium.

101 Cantina is best known for its colorful menu of signature tapas-style 4-inch tacos, a total of a dozen unique styles each with its own signature combination of flavors and ingredients ranging from sweet and spicy shrimp, to a Philly-style steak and cheese ($1.75 to $2.75). Take the "Cheech and Chong," a Korean-inspired savory steak (Cheech) or spicy pork (Chong) served with Korean salsa roja, cilantro-lime relish, crunchy romaine lettuce and shredded cabbage with a sesame-chili dressing.

The menu also offers standard Mexican-American fare, including quesadillas, nachos, burritos, chimichangas and salads. The most intriguing menu item however: La Venganza de los Mayas. We can't wait for to see someone take their first stab at this, the restaurant's self-proclaimed "tacopalypse" where patrons are challenged to eat 30 of the establishment's classic tacos in 30 minutes or less. If you do, you get your meal for free and receive some 101 Cantina apparel, as well as a $50 gift card for use at your next visit.

Look forward to happy hour and weekday specials similar to those found at the Gainesville location, including the 101 Cantina happy hour Monday through Thursday from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., featuring half-off all appetizers, $4 margaritas, $5 "loaded" Coronas and $2 domestic drafts.

On "Margarita Monday" buy and dish small or large and you'll receive a free margarita (parties of four or more will receive a margarita pitcher), while "Taco Tuesday" offers three tacos for the price of two. Ladies drink free from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Wednesday, while Thursday and Friday means $5 quesadillas and apps. We could keep going, but you get the idea...

The upcoming June 8 grand opening begins at 6 p.m., and will offer guests complimentary taco sliders and Avion margaritas until 10 p.m., but the party will continue until 2 a.m. For more information about 101 Cantina, visit the 101 Cantina Facebook page and call 561-300-5280.

Follow Nicole Danna on Twitter, @SoFloNicole.

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