Wednesday , 16 April 2014

Nada – Restaurant Review

I got my internship!  He emailed me yesterday but didn’t say whether or not I got it, just asked me to call and I swear, I read it and my stomach dropped.  Like, oh no, he’s going to tell me they went with someone else.

So I called him and yay!  He said they decided to offer it to me – how exciting!  Seriously, I’m really hyped.

So when my husband got home he surprised me by taking me out to dinner to celebrate.  And no, I swear he didn’t walk in the door and I didn’t say oh you’re surprising me with dinner before he had a chance to say anything.  And it had nothing to do with the new dress I bought to celebrate and wanted to wear out, nothing…really.

But smart man that he is he said, “Of course I’m surprising you with dinner, where would you like to go?”  Never say my husband doesn’t understand how to go with the flow sometimes.

So I’ve wanted to try Nada for awhile now.  It’s a sort of upscale Mexican restaurant  (especially since I’ll be working downtown now and not that far from there).  Actually the place I’m working is about a four minute walk from where my husband works so that’s kind of nice. My goal was to get to Nada for their happy hour (from 4 – 6) but my husband ended up working late so we weren’t able to make it.

The outside of Nada Restaurant in Downtown Cincinnati Image is from Happy-Hour.com

First dish up, the quesdo fundido ($7).  I wanted to start with this because I actually have a recipe for it that I’ve wanted to try and plan to the next time I have people over.  The dish was pretty amazing.  And really, how can you go wrong with two kinds of cheese along with chorizo is a warm cast iron skillet?  It’s served with their almost puffy tortilla chips and a picante sauce.

The picante sauce was also really good, very spicy (which it should be considering the name) and had almost a smoky taste.  My one qualm was that it was supposed to be served with pickled onions on top.  I didn’t pick up an onion and eat it by itself so I can’t be 100% sure, but they definitely seemed like regular fresh white onions.  I wasn’t getting any of that sweet vinegary flavor that I associate with pickled onions (which are a personal favorite of mine.  In fact I often make them at home.)

I ordered the pork green chile with a fried egg ($20).  First off, the pork shoulder itself was meltingly tender and I loved the salsa verde it was swimming in.  The fried egg on top was perfect, especially once I broke the yolk and mixed it in.  My husband looked at it and said, “That doesn’t look good at all” but quickly changed his tune once he actually got a bite of it.

It had a nice heat level and a beautiful green color from the jalapeno salsa verde.  On the side was a side of poblano rice without poblanos?  Maybe they just season it with poblano powder or cook it with whole poblanos that they pick out later and it may be my fault, but usually when I think poblano rice I’m expecting to see small chunks of poblano in the rice.  The rice was nothing special but when rolled up in a tortilla with the pork it matched well and helped absorb some of the salsa and juices.

Finally, my husband ordered the Baja Fish Tacos ($16).  This was our one disappointment of the meal.  First off, we love fish tacos.  The fact that they were fried “baja-style” which usually means beer-battered was not the problem (in fact, that’s usually an even better thing).  The plate itself came with three tacos.

So three tortillas are laid out with a coating of guacamole, cabbage, the piece of fried fish, and topped with pico.  The guacamole itself was amazing.  I can see why Nada is known for their guac.  But the fish was very hit or miss.  My husband liked the first one he ate, especially once he got to the guacamole part.  But the one I ate was really fishy, which I wasn’t expecting considering its haddock.

At first my husband didn’t know what I was talking about, but at that point I was full and he ended up finishing my taco and agreed that the one I had eaten was very fishy.  He also ate the third and last taco and said that its fishy-ness level was between the first mild one and the one I had.

The saving grace for the taco was the guacamole.  Honestly, I think Arthur’s make a better fish taco and I’d pick Arthur’s over Nada’s any day.  Next time we’ll skip on the baja style and maybe try the grilled red snapper one.

Service was really good, no complaints there.  Our server was very friendly and we never lacked for attention.

So overall, we’ll definitely visit again.  It’s a very nice interior space and it’s easy to sit there, relax and enjoy a good meal.  And I’m still determined to either hit up their happy hour or late night seating.

Nada on Urbanspoon

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2 comments

  1. Congratulations on your internship! I say you’ve got a clever guy! One day my hubby came home to see a FULL casserole, pan and all, in the trash. He turned to me and said, “I want to take you to dinner….”

    …sometimes they get it right! Dinner sounded delicious!
    Ann recently posted..Bourbon Chicken….GRILLEDMy Profile

  2. I love seafood and a good fish taco, but I can’t stand a fishy tasting fish. Maybe the grilled red snapper will be better. Personally, at home, I use channel catfish.
    Jeff recently posted..Enameled and Seasoned Cast Iron Cookware ReviewsMy Profile

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