Emiliano’s

We attended the media opening of Old Montreal’s newest addition, Emiliano’s, an authentic Mexican restaurant. And let’s face it, Old Montreal was missing a Mexican restaurant.  We had a fun night and we were able to sample their guacamole with spicy crab and their tortilla lasagna, we were intrigued to try more!

“Margarita’ $15

“Margarita’ $15

It’s safe to say that when we were invited back for a sit down dinner to sample some menu items, we were excited.  We also took advantage of one of the last days of summer and sat on the terrace. Margaritas were the perfect start to our dinner, they’re the perfect start to any Mexican fiesta.

“Grilled queso fresco: queso fresco, mango, avocado, chorizo, cilantro” 15$

“Grilled queso fresco: queso fresco, mango, avocado, chorizo, cilantro” 15$

We started with the grilled queso, which was accompanied by mango, avocado and grilled chorizo.  We built our own fajitas with the warm tortillas.  A spritz of lime was needed to liven up each bite.  The cheese was similar to haloumi in terms of texture and ability to take on flavours.  The mango added a nice sweetness to offset the spicy chorizo.

“Guacamole with spicy crab: avocado, roasted cipollini, red Thai pepper, cilantro, lime juice, roasted pineapple, spicy crab” 14$

“Guacamole with spicy crab: avocado, roasted cipollini, red Thai pepper, cilantro, lime juice, roasted pineapple, spicy crab” 14$

We had tried the guacamole with crab at the media opening and loved it and it did not disappoint at our sit down dinner.  All the guacamole at Emiliano’s is made to order.  In other words, only when you order it do they make it, so you know it’s fresh and the mashed avocado a nice green colour!  The guacamole is a little chunky which is perfect for scooping and there is a lot of sweet, shredded crab piled high on top, with a nice spicy kick to it!

“Octopus Infierno ceviche: extremely spicy marinated octopus, red cherry tomato, pickled red onion, avocado” 18$

“Octopus Infierno ceviche: extremely spicy marinated octopus, red cherry tomato, pickled red onion, avocado” 18$

Next up was the octopus ceviche, which we were told was very spicy.  Chunks of tender octopus were accompanied by sweet cherry tomatoes, pickled red onions and smooth avocado to quell the spiciness of the dish that got stronger as we got to the bottom of the dish!  A fresh dish and a nice alternative to how octopus is usually served in restaurants.

“Green Tamales: carnitas, tomatillo spicy salsa, cream, radish” 14$

Tamales are a staple of Mexican cuisine and we were treated to green tamales filled with carnitas.  The chef told us that everything is made in-house for the masa, including grinding their own corn into flour.  Impressed with this little bit of knowledge, we dug in and were a little disappointed as the masa wasn’t as tender as we had hoped; it fell apart rather easily.  The carnitas stuffing was also lacking a little flavour for our taste buds.

“Chicken with mole: stuffed chicken breast with cheese and mushrooms, mole sauce, crema fresca, onion, cilantro, pineapple and corn yellow rice, pistachio” 23$

“Chicken with mole: stuffed chicken breast with cheese and mushrooms, mole sauce, crema fresca, onion, cilantro, pineapple and corn yellow rice, pistachio” 23$

The chicken with mole lifted our hopes again, served with a coconut infused rice.  The chicken breast was stuffed with mushrooms and cheese, and drizzled with a rich mole sauce, crema, and pistachios for crunch.  Easily a dish we could picture eating on a beach in Mexico!

Special: Tortilla Lasagna Photo Credit: Montreall.com

Special: Tortilla Lasagna
Photo Credit: Montreall.com

When we were at the media event, we tried Emiliano’s tortilla lasagna and loved it!  The chef told us it would be on the fall menu but promised to bring us something similar.  Unfortunately, we preferred the original over the red enchiladas.  There was something about the acidity from the pineapple in the pastor and the acidity of the red enchilada sauce that made it too much.

“Red Enchiladas: soft blanched tortilla stuffed with pastor, topped red sauce, sour cream, cilantro, onion, pineapple” 17$

“Red Enchiladas: soft blanched tortilla stuffed with pastor, topped red sauce, sour cream, cilantro, onion, pineapple” 17$

There are three desserts on the menu and we got to try all three.  Presented on a platter, we started with the dulce de leche crepes.  Delicate crepes were doused in dulce de leche and sprinkled with crunchy walnuts.  Served warm, it was our least favourite of the three desserts as the crepes were a bit soggy under all the sauce.

“Dulce de Leche crepes: strawberry coulis, walnuts” 9$ “Patron Flan: patron xo café tequila caramel” 9$ “Tres leches: coconut cake” 9$

“Dulce de Leche crepes: strawberry coulis, walnuts” 9$
“Patron Flan: patron xo café tequila caramel” 9$
“Tres leches: coconut cake” 9$

The flan was cool and creamy, with a layer of caramel on top.  Rich tasting, it was very light and soon devoured off the board!  The tres leches coconut cake was our favourite.  Very light and airy, the cake was moist and the fresh coconut wasn’t overwhelming.  Definitely the dessert to order at Emilinaos.

“Guacamole au Chicharron: avocado, roasted cipollini, jalapeno pepper, cilantro, lime juice, roasted tomatillo, chicharron” 12$

“Guacamole au Chicharron: avocado, roasted cipollini, jalapeno pepper, cilantro, lime juice, roasted tomatillo, chicharron” 12$

There is always a need for variety and with the addition of Emiliano’s in Old Montreal, you’ll be able to satisfy that Mexican craving whenever it hits. God knows we have a guac craving that’s insatiable! There are some good dishes at Emiliano’s but we were expecting to be blown away with bright and bold flavours, unfortunately most dishes were too mild and lacking a punch.  But we’ll definitely be going back to try out some other items that we missed out on, like their tacos and soups. Hopefully we’ll get the bold flavours that Mexican cuisine is known for!

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Our Rating: As Expected

http://www.restaurantemilianos.com/
Emiliano's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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