Address: 49 Bonham Road
Sai Ying Pun, once a quiet part of town, has now become a hotspot for new restaurants and bars. Featuring Mexican Street style food in an underground space, El loco Gringo is certainly not easy to find.
The entrance is an ordinary foyer that looks like an apartment building, in between a Mcdonalds and a shop. Walk inside and you notice a door to your left, leading you down some dark stars into a quaint U-shaped space, that features a dining area and bar. You immediately notice the clothes lines and quirky signs plastered on the ceiling and walls. It’s like you walked into a roadside Mexican diner!
El loco Gringo’s food works around their drinks menu, where you are encouraged to order many plates or small bites to share and pair with cocktails. Tequila is certainly not in short supply! From infused tequila to Blanco and matured Anejos, as well as other beers and liqueurs. The Menu also features an array of fusion street foods, such as ceviche, tacos and the classic grilled corn.
First off, some cocktails. On the left is the Eassays Mule $100, with tequila, cardamom, vanilla, lime & Ginger Ale. A mellow drink that has a kick, and goes well with nachos and jalapeños! Mojito El Blanco $100; tequila, St. Germain, Mint, Lime, Cucumber and Grapefruit, on the right. A fruity and light drink that appeals to everyone. Especially someone who does not fancy tequila, like me!
Chips and Dips, Guacamole, Pico de Gallo and sour cream $60
- Thick cut Tortilla chips served with creamy guac and spicy Pico de Gallo, the prefect bar snack that goes with their array of tequila and beers.
Jalapeño Poppers, 3x Beef $15 and 3x Cheese $10 each with a side of Blue cheese dip.
- Don’t let their tempura coatings full you, this will make your mouth go on fire! The beef was slightly dry and packed a punch, definitely more spicy than the cheese stuffed jalapeño. The cheese helped mellow out the spiciness and slow burn, and oozes out once you bite into the popper; the better of the two. An addictive snack that pairs well with beer.
Chipotle Octopus and Watermelon Ceviche $110
Smoky and creamy polenta paired with a slightly smoky octopus, heaven! The watermelon gave a refreshing spin to the dish and helped offset those burning jalapeños!
Spanish Mackerel & Mango Ceviche $150
- Fresh Mackerel paired with sweet mango and not too spicy. The corn kernels also added crunch and dimension to the dish. I could eat the whole bowl!
Grilled corn on the cob, mayonnaise, Manchego cheese and chilli $35
- Rather disappointing, as this is one of the staples of Mexican street food. There was too much mayonnaise and the corn felt soft, like it was boiled rather than grilled. Mrs. Pound does a much better Mexican corn.
Starting from top left;
2x Spit roast pork tacos with pineapple and Habanero Chutney $40
- Tender pork with sweet cubes of pineapple to counteract the spicy habanero. Unique, well-balanced and very tasty.
Grilled Chicken taco with guacamole and caramelised onion $35
- Reminds you of a chicken satay, grilled chicken coated in a peanut sauce, finished with guacamole and onions. A surprisingly good combination of fusion flavours.
2x Chillean Seabass tacos with coleslaw & apricot $55
- Inspired by Japanese Miso cod, this is a new take on the classic fried fish tacos. The coleslaw balances the sweetness from the glaze and apricot. The seabass was also tender and not rubbery. A good taco.
Baja Lobster taco with mango & cucumber $80
- Luxury made casual, with a slight Japanese twist. Lobster tail coated in a light tempura batter, paired with Shiso leaf to bring out the freshness. Bomb! Mango and cucumber were good accompaniments and didn’t overpower the star of the show; Lobster!
Baja Lobster taco with mango & cucumber – left
Spit roast pork tacos with pineapple and Habanero Chutney
El loco gringo sits amongst many Mexican eateries in Hong Kong, but certainly stands out from them. As good as Verde Mar in Wan Chai, albeit less authentic, its exceptional service and quality cooking definitely matches. Perfect for gatherings or those who are tired of the abundance of Tex-Mex around Hong Kong, this is the place for you. Combining Asian flavours into their tacos and drinks, El loco Gringo gives Mexican food a modern spin that not only has great flavour, but is colourful and unique.