The Unvegan

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Compunding Words at MexiKosher

Fun with puns!

Who doesn’t love a good pun? Or even better, who doesn’t love an awesome compound word. Combining giant and enormous gave us ginormous. Combining lion and tiger gave us liger. And combining terrible and institution gave us Ohio State University (yes, I know that is technically three words, but I stand by it). Now joining the ever-growing list of compound words is a restaurant named MexiKosher in (surprisingly) Pico-Robertson. I love a good compound word as much as the next guy, but could this new Kosher Mexican restaurant make a happy unvegan? I intended to find out.

The set up of the place is pretty awkward and we we walked in we had no idea where to order or who to order from. Eventually, we found our way to someone willing to help us out. It seemed they were trying to do things the Chipotle way, without pork or cheese, but still hadn’t gotten the organizational efficiency together.

Of course, as an American, I lamented the lack of cheese. Jew or not, I expect cheese on my Mexican food. To those who know true Mexican food, however, the lack of cheese should not have been surprising. Few Mexican dishes actually involve cheese, so I was still excited. What didn’t excite me, though, was the price. The cheapest meat offered clocked in at 10.99 for a dish.

Just like bubbe used to make.

I chose one of these 10.99 dishes, the grilled chicken tacos. This came with three tacos and my selection of toppings, which I simply limited to guacamole (an extra 75 cents) and cilantro. They were incredibly generous with the guac and I ended up with guacamole tacos with a bit of meat in each. I also got some beans and rice in my family picnic-style divided plate. Then, at check out, we discovered something amazing. Checking in on Facebook resulted in a 20% discount. Now I don’t do that Facebook check-in stuff to remain incognito (just don’t ask me about foursquare), but my buddy checked in and we piggybacked his discount.

That’s what I call a salsa bar.

We snagged a table and I went to work devouring the tacos. What I found was pretty delicious. These weren’t some sort of Jewish fusion, but simply tacos prepared with delicious Kosher meat. The chicken was moist, with a hint of citrusy goodness, and then there were the crazy sauces offered. These sat near the register in condiment bottles, keeping the place unique compared to your ordinary Mexican salsa bars. These bottles changed the game in two ways: 1) No more accidentally mixing salsas with an unsteady ladle and 2) they could be easily shaken up to ensure even distribution of flavor. I tried a few of them and found each to be pretty tasty and creative. The Chipotle Marmalade and Serrano Aioli were definitely my two favorites.

Yet, as delicious as this all was, I realized that I couldn’t justify the price of Kosher. Not when I could walk down the street or stroll up to a taco truck and get a similarly tasty Mexican meal for half the price.

Mexikosher is certainly a good addition to Pico-Robertson. For those who keep Kosher, it certainly provides the necessary taste. But for the treif in this world, MexiKosher is probably only worth a dabble.