By Amy Nicholls from the North East Eats blog. See her previous review of 808 Bar here.
Authentic Mexico in the heart of Sunderland. If you love flavour, freshness and outstanding service then this is the place for you; just make sure you book in advance as tables go fast!
Upon arrival at Mexico 70, we were instantly transported from the city of Sunderland to an authentic Mexican taco shack. The decor is contemporary and rustic with the brick walls, Mexican paintings and dim lighting creating a welcoming atmosphere as soon as you walk through the doors.
As we were seated at our table, we were greeted by cheerful, enthusiastic staff who were clearly passionate about both the food they were serving and their customers. There is a vast array of Mexican inspired cocktails and bottled beers, as well as unique beer choices from local breweries. With so much choice, we were offered a taste of a local beer before deciding, and this small touch, in addition to manager recommendations and detailed knowledge of their produce, made for outstanding service from start to finish.
We were advised before ordering that each dish arrives at the table as soon as it is ready and not all at once; however, this only added to the excitement and anticipation. We were given an array of Mexican sauces for our table (mild, smoky and spicy) and shortly after ordering, our first taco arrived and blew us all away.
We visited the restaurant on ‘Taco Tuesday’, meaning all tacos were 3 for £9 and with so many amazing tacos to choose from, this meant we could try them all! We started our meal with a trio of salsas and handmade tortilla chips and it was clear our waitress was right: everything was made fresh with both passion and skill.
We were recommended the Korean belly pork taco by the manager and it is clear to see why this is both a staff and customer favourite. The pork belly was crunchy on the outside and fell apart on the inside and this, alongside the sauce, accompaniments and the fresh, soft tortilla made this the best taco I have ever eaten.
The vast array of taco flavours ranged from Mexican Baja fish, to Indian spiced crispy chicken with lentil dahl and mango chutney, to buffalo and jerk chicken, lamb shawarma, Thai beef and crispy squid and, although none of us were vegan, there was an extensive list of vegan options, alongside delicious loaded fries and sides.
After sampling all of the tacos, we were left with our mouths on fire with flavour. Nothing was too much trouble and it was an affordable meal that introduced us to a range of tastes that we had not experienced anywhere else. Having never previously been to a restaurant whose primary focus is tacos, is clear to see that Mexico 70 have mastered their trade and undoubtedly demonstrate how versatile and exciting tacos can be. The food here is fresh yet filling, authentic yet different and an asset to the Sunderland restaurant scene.