Thank you to Zomato, Naomi and Nick for inviting me to this Zomato meetup. Thank you also to Los Vida for your hospitality and hosting the event for us.
To celebrate halloween, Los Vida held a Day of the Dead themed evening in true mexican style!
Along the other delicious restaurants in Crows Nest, Los Vida is nestled amongst it all sporting authentic and genuine Mexican dishes.
I went in thinking, “probably nachos, melted cheese, salsa, you know…mexican” but how I was wrong.
Arriving at the restaurant, it’s certainly bigger than it looks from the outside. The restaurant is split in about 3 sections, 2 lofts and a lower dining area. The walls and decor was filled with beautiful artwork donated by artists collaborating with the restaurant and directed by the Mexican Embassy.
The staff all friendly and enthusiastic immediately asked if I needed a drink and in turn made me a surprise cocktail.
As the rest of the party slowly trickled in we made our way to one of the lofts where we were greeted by one of the partnering artists of the restaurant who also created an alter for the evening based on the day of the dead.
The day of the dead or Dios de los Muertos, honours death in a way western culture does differently. By celebrating the deaths of loved ones and honouring their legacy, this day represents a day where deceased members are awakened to share celebrations with their loved ones.
Artist Jose Garcia Quintana created this altar, many of the artworks in the restaurant and even showed us intricate linework and watercolors was there on the day to explain his masterpiece.
The alter was traditionally ornamented with color and vibrance as well as treats, flowers and liquor.
Co Owner, Octavio spoke to us briefly about his love and passion for mexican cuisine and how westernised mexican food has become. Mexican culture is alive and vibrant and Los Vida was born with this intention as well, something authentic and real that reconditions what we think mexican food is.
Los Vida set up a table of native foods in respect to wear in Mexico they originate. We saw how flavours differed between the meaty north to the fresh south.
We started off with another drink, a number of strawberry daiquiri’s filled the room in anticipation for the menu ahead.
To start we had a few dumpling shaped parcels called ‘Gorditas’. The warm pastry parcels gave nothing away, biting into it the gordita was filled with mince and spices. The fried pastry made for a perfect crispy encasing for the parcel and the sauce added a tangy zing to the dish.
I wasn’t sure where the spice was coming from whether from the Gordita or the sauce but it was welcomed and warming.
Next up was a serving of cherry chipotle chicken wings that would make and saucy wing lover drool.
These would be the perfect finals food, the chicken was marinated and served with a delicious spicy and sweet sauce. The chicken was moist and succulent and were the perfect serving size.
If you do go for this delicious dish, prepare to get your hands dirty and dig in.
The next dish was a nice refresher from the spice hit from the previous two dishes.
I was always a lover of Sashimi but I’ve never tried cevice before and was sort of expecting the same thing. It was actually tangy and full of flavor from the avocado, lime and spanish onion. The tortilla chip the cevice balance precariously on made for a perfect base and texture to go with the smooth cevice mix.
This colorful and bright parcel was a Yucatan Fish Taco.
Octavio told us about how to hold the taco with a pinky out and that you move your head to the taco not the other way around. In his terms “you make love to the taco, not the taco to you”.
I was actually surprised this was fish, it was quite meaty in texture and filled with flavor.
The dessert was one of my favorite dishes to finish on, a chocolate spring roll like dessert filled with gooey chocolate and a masa chocolate cake. We were in love with these desserts and it’s no wonder mexican is so full of vibrance and life when their food alone brings you to life.
So next time you have a hankering for some real mexican food, check out Los Vida, grab a margarita and dig in.