Recently we had lunch at Antigua
, a Mexican/Latin restaurant in the Milwaukee suburb of West Allis. Our younger daughter had eaten there while on a class field trip and really enjoyed it, and wanted to return.
On Erin's recommendation we started with an order of Alioli de Cilantro and bread. The cilantro flavor was noticeable but not overpowering, which is good because I like cilantro in fairly small amounts.
The complimentary plate of house tapas includes mango quesadillas, empanaditas (small empanadas), and potato croquettes along with a smooth, spicy dipping salsa (sort of a Latin ketchup), which not only was good with the tapas but complemented the alioli as well.
I tried a bowl of the Crema de Elote soup as well. While a cream soup it's not as thick as many are, but it had good corn and cilantro flavors. As a bonus the tortilla strips held up surprisingly well and didn't turn to mush.
On to the main dishes. I stayed on the tapas page and ordered pupusas, which are a Salvadoran food I'd never had before. They're not overwhelmingly stuffed (cheese and pork) and while I started out with a knife and fork I wound up using my hands to tear off cornbread-like pieces and dip them into the same salsa that accompanied the tapas. The accompanying slaw ("curtido") was crisp, vinegary, and a little spicy.
Erin decided on the Mole Poblano, which was a nice piece of chicken in a dark, rich, slightly spicy sauce (mole). The sesame seeds added a nutty flavor and crunch, and even though chocolate is a mole ingredient it adds more of an earthy tone instead of sweetness.
Kathy vacillated between enchiladas and Ropa Vieja and finally decided on the latter, which is a dish of braised and shredded beef. I don't know what cut is used but the end result is a plate of tender, slightly tomatoey strands that are equally at home on a fork or in a tortilla. Those are fried plantains off to the side.
Erin's meal came with a side order of refried beans and cilantro-seasoned rice. The beans had a nice texture (not too lumpy nor too creamy) and flavor, and like the other dishes that used cilantro the herb flavor was there without being overwhelming. Kathy's side was the same rice but with whole black beans, which were OK but I liked the refried beans more.
For those who want dessert a piece of honey-drizzled flan is available for 50 cents with each entree, and my dining companions didn't hesitate. I'm not one for sweets so I passed but both Kathy and Erin really enjoyed and made short work of the sweet custard.
We were very happy with lunch, not only for the quality of the food but the attentive service as well. It was about a 90 minute drive to get there so I can't say when we'll return, but I'd certainly like to try some of the other menu items.
<message edited by ScreamingChicken on Mon, 10/31/11 10:39 AM>