Mexican food is one of the cuisines that I’ve come to like during my studies in the states. Burrito, taco and quesadilla are some of my favorite Mexican dishes. After visiting Tacos el Gordo and El Camión, I continued my search for authentic Mexican food.
As the 2012 winner of Best Mexican Restaurant in Seattle, La Carta de Oaxaca had immediately caught my attention. And since it was conveniently located in Ballard (where we spent most of our evenings), we decided to visit the place.
The restaurant was nuts at dinner hours. Inevitably, we had to wait in line before being seated. Luckily, the famous Hot Cake Molten Chocolate Cakery was just next door. To enjoy the best of both worlds and use our time effectively, we split into 2 groups – one waited for a table at La Carta de Oaxaca and one picked up the orders from the dessert store. We had no problem at all for having hot chocolate cake as our appetizer 😛
It was common to be surrounded by lively, party atmosphere at Mexican restaurants, La Carta de Oaxaca was no exception. The menu was made up of dishes from the state of Oaxaca, some of which was quite foreign to us. At the end, I made a safe choice with halibut tacos and Kev made a wild decision with tacos fritos.
We started with tortilla chips and guacamole (USD$6). The chips were warm and crisp, but the portion was quite small. Besides the freshly made guacamole, there was a good variety of salsa over the counter for you to taste.
Kev’s tacos fritos (USD$9) came with 3 rolled and fried tortillas filled with beef, topped with guacamole, black beans, dried chile sauce, cheese and crema mexicana. These interesting tacos were quite similar to the Chinese spring rolls for its extremely crunchy skin! The beef tasted okay and was not overpowered by all the sauces added on top of it.
My halibut tacos (USD$14) was tasty! The sauteed halibut was really fresh. With the chipotle pepper salsa sauce, it had a smokey, spicy kick that would satisfy any spicy addict’s cravings.
Overall, we had a good evening at La Carta de Oaxaca. The food was above average. Reasonably priced. It is a great spot for people who want to explore unique Mexico dishes besides tacos. But does it live up to its name as the best Mexican restaurant in Seattle? I doubted it.