Mamacita, Havelock North

I love this place: it’s like stepping into a kitsch little slice of Mexico right on our doorstep here in Hawkes Bay.

Working in town, there is nothing like a taco to break the monotony of the day, and no better way to wash it down than with an ice cold bottle of Corona.

Reader in the US or Europe may this moment be crying “So what! Good Mexican food is everywhere!” 

What they miss is that finding a decent restaurant, serving world cuisines in rural New Zealand is like finding hens teeth. I nearly wept manly tears when I was told that I wouldn’t be having a side of chips with my dinner!

So what to try? We crack straight into some Refried Black Bean and Bacon Dip with corn chips, which vanishes before we know what’s happening.

She opts for a shredded chicken taco, which judging by her silence has gone down pretty well. I have the fried chicken, and oh boy is it good! Slathered in chipotle sauce there is no better cure for a rough day at work than burning mouth and a grinning soul.

It all leads to this:

Empty plates! Obviously…

Always a sign of a great meal; only after shots!

Love the service, the flavours and the atmosphere. Coming to the bay? Go here.

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