17 Yongjia Lu (永嘉路17号)
I’ve been very keen to try out Mi Tierra since they opened, but was a little wary since I’ve heard both good and bad reviews. They also tend to indulge in the big no-no of online “marketing” – shilling review sites with their own fake positive reviews, and spamming community boards with their marketing. Not sure why they resort to such low level measures, because we were thoroughly impressed with our meal.
Headed up by Chef Gabriela Fernandez, Mi Tierra serves up home-style Mexican food. This is important to note, because many (especially Americans) associate Mexican food as Tex-Mex, which is actually entirely different. Mi Tierra truly is Mexican style food, the stuff you find in homes in Mexico. Set in a lofty 1920s villa in the French Concession area, it’s high glass ceilings in the enclosed courtyard makes a beautiful setting for a lovely meal.
The Mi Tierra villa
Beautiful air-conditioned courtyard where we were seated
Service is prompt and friendly, and they swiftly serve complimentary filtered water, a nice touch. We start off with the Choriqueso (chorizo and asudero cheese dip served with corn tortillas), which comes in a little earthen pot. A big mound of minced chorizo sausage nestles at the bottom, and it’s absolutely smothered with melted cheese on top. Sausages + cheese, 2 of my favourite foods, combined in ecstasy. It’s not a stretch to say this is my favourite dish here and probably one of my favourite dishes ever. The only downside? It drips with oil, a LOT of it. This will probably scare off a lot of people. In fact, we actually drained off the oil onto the saucer beneath, because it was too overpowering and drenched our tortillas.
Choriqueso (chorizo and asudero cheese dip served with corn tortillas) (68元)
A teaspoon of this treasure heaped on the tortilla
The Beef Coyotas are ordered because they sound interesting. They’re handmade small corn tortillas, with beef steak chunks, chorizo and cheddar cheese mixed on top, and with a drizzle of green sauce, sour cream and avocado. It sounded like a glorified steak soft taco to us, and it sort of is very similiar :P It came out beautifully presented and each of the 3 morsels piled high. They are tasty, but nowhere near the levels of the Choriqueso we just had, and we probably wouldn’t order them again.
Beef Coyotas (65元)
The Baby pork ribs in green mole sauce, served with garden rice and corn tortillas come with 4 large meaty ribs lolling in an earthen pot flooded with thick mole sauce. It’s enough to be shared by 2 people, so you don’t overdose yourself on ribs. The pork ribs are tender and more-ish, and I particularly like the subtly sweet mole sauce. It’s especially delicious mixed in with the small bowl of rice provided, and also with the tortillas pulled apart and dipped in.
Baby pork ribs in green mole sauce, served with garden rice and corn tortillas (165元)
Tender hunks of ribs.. mmm…
But…… the piece de resistance. The Churros. It is, hands down, flat-out, no doubt, THE BEST CHURROS I’VE EVER HAD. We saw stars, we foodgasmed. 5 fat fingers of deep fried churros came out in a pot, dusted perfectly with cinnamon (often they have too much or too little, these were done to perfection). They were accompanied with an assortment of 3 dips – a thick gooey caramel (entirely luscious), fluffy rich cream (delish) and a liquid chocolate (this wasn’t as good as the others, needed to be thick melted chocolate instead).
But the best part? The two cups of Kahlua creme coffee that come with the Churros set, making it fantastic value for money. These babies send us into conniptions of delight. The milk and Kahlua is boiled for hours until it reduces into an ultra-creamy thick drink, which is then sprinkled generous with cinnamon. It’s enough to make your heart skip a beat or ten. The rich concoction glides down your throat, and it’s sweet but not overly so. It’s simply divine, hard to entirely describe properly, and a MUST-HAVE if you live in Shanghai or ever visit.
In fact, dunk the fat fingers of fluffy churros into the warm Kahlua creme coffee and it seeps into the churros, so when you bite off the chunk, it explodes with warmth in your mouth with a mixture of fluffy dough and warm silky milk. We’d go back over and over and over and over again for this alone.
Churros set with two cups of Kahlua creme coffee (65元)
THAT cup of Kahlua creme coffee…..
The 4 dishes filled Chris and I up sufficiently, and we were full afterwards. I would say they are decent value, because the quality of the ingredients really stands out and we have not yet found anything close to this in Shanghai, especially the Churros set for dessert. So I would whole-heartedly recommend the place, and we’ll be back very soon :)
A rose that the waiter gave me after our meal – so sweet!