TORTILLA, NEWCASTLE

Tortilla is Newcastle's new, fuss-free Mexican joint. We popped in for a Latin lunch filled with 'healthy' burritos and tasty tacos...

Hang out

A cool little hang-out found in Eldon Square’s new, colourful dining quarter. Unlike other Latin-inspired restaurants in the city, this little spot serves up a small, but perfectly-formed, menu devoted to burritos and tacos – both done the proper way. Though, come the evening, you can also choose from either a plate of oozy, naughty nachos, or traditional chicken quesadillas. It’s perfect for grab-and-go lunches, but if you prefer a sit-down meal with mates then you can do that here, too.

Decked out

Laid-back, shack-style interiors. The wooden bar takes centre stage – colourful and inviting – and there’s industrial-inspired seating at the back for sit-down diners. Design is clean, cool and fuss-free – much like its food.

Sip

All your usual soft drinks, including iced tea, and beers and ciders. Have a frozen margarita if you’re dining after dusk.

Food matters

The grub here is fresh-as-can-be. It’s surprisingly nutritious, too (if you forego the soured cream, that is), if you decide to go ‘naked’ (more on that below). We went down the takeaway route during a busy shopping trip, but the quality was restaurant-style. The ingredients are simple – your chosen meat, rice and beans and a few toppings if you fancy it – and cooking methods are kept as authentic as possible, we hear, to give diners a true taste of Mexico. Always nice on a drizzly January afternoon.

We ate

The menu’s small, so it’s not hard to end up ordering nearly everything. The ‘naked’ burrito intrigued us, so we went for it, receiving a large bowl of Latin goodness that felt hearty and filling, despite being ‘lower carb’. These so-called ‘Mexican bowls’ have earned themselves quite the glowing reputation recently thanks to all the healthy, happy-snapping Instagrammers out there, and we can report that this one didn’t disappoint. Basically a big muddle of well-cooked rice (you can swap this for lettuce if you fancy a salad), beans a-plenty, peppers and onions and our choice of meat (though you can forget this if you’re veggie/vegan). We went with tender strips of grilled chicken, which the guys marinate in mellow ‘adobo’ (a nice mix of soy sauce, garlic and vinegar), and a generous dollop of zingy salsa to liven things up a bit. A pleasing good-for-you bite to eat. Our dining partners tried the standard burrito, for which the place is famed, and the ‘tres tacos’. The first went down like a treat – a soft and doughy tortilla, filled to the brim with the aforementioned fillings. Though they went with ‘carnitas’ for the filling – red tractor pork, slow-cooked for that all-important melt-in-the-mouth texture – and lashings of cool soured cream. The tacos married crunchy corn and oozy, smoking filling – think grass-fed British Isles beef, marinated in a sweet, BBQ-like rub, then chargrilled. The definition of yum.


tortilla.co.uk

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