It's no secret - I love Mexican food. And I absolutely loathe what most people believe is Mexican food. Let's get real here: 3 Amigos is not Mexican food: it's tex mex. If we all got a taste of the real deal, we'd all be hooked and we'd all be a bunch of jumbo-sized oompa loompas. Totally worth it.
The BF and I were introduced to this castle of delicious by our good friends C and D, who assured us that this place is legit. Now I know that C loves food as much as I do, so this was some reliable vouching. One of the best (and most dangerous) qualities of this restaurant is that it's literally 10 minutes away from home - East Enders, take note.
Now for those of you who are new to authentic Mexican cuisine, know that it's not a fancy shmancy affair. It's messy as f*ck and worth every stain on your shirt. A lot of dishes are centered on meat or seafood, but there's always a vegetarian option. There's lots of texture and most importantly, a crapload of flavor in any bite.
First thing's first: when you sit down, they bring you a menu along with homemade corn chips and 3 salsas. The chips are awesome and the salsas are one hotter than the next. The red one is mild and more on the sweet side, while the yellow one is spicy and has a moderate kick to it. The green one, on the other hand, is hella spicy, but totally yummy if you like a good sting to the tongue.
Here's what I ordered: Sopes.
Sopes are a thick corn-flour tortilla-type-of-thing topped with your choice of meat, refried beans, veggies, salsa and sour cream. They're dee-lish. I've tried the beef ones, which were awesome, and these below are the chicken ones which are out-of-this-world yummy.
The BF had Tacos al Pastor: very tender and marinated pork topped with coriander, onions and salsa. These badboys pack a lot of flavour. He loved it.
Being the freak that he is, BF proceeded to order himself a second meal: a taco wrap with EVERY type of meat in it. I don't believe it's on the menu... but clearly you can request it cause this guy went ahead and did it. And yes, he ate it all. And yes, he made those awkward moaning sounds of enjoyment after every bite.
I guess I should also mention that the restaurant houses a mini grocery store with lots of Mexican products that you'll definitely be tempted to bring home. As you should. But since you don't want to go broke, let me break it down to the essential: don't leave without a container of guacamole. BF never cared for guacamole and he goes apesh*t for this stuff. El Rey del Taco's guac has a totally unique flavour unlike any I've ever tried: it also has chunks of tomatoes in there, some lime, and coriander *drool* Lots of dishes include a spoonful of guacamole, so you'll see what I mean... I dare you to leave that place without a container of it.
Wondering how you can make full use of your tub o' guac? Put it on everything. Yeah, you can use it as a chip dip. But this thing rocks when piled into a panini with coldcuts or even cooked with scrambled eggs.
So let's discuss the essential info: it's inexpensive and it's in a great area so have fun exploring before / after eating. You can also take it to go, or order it through Just Eat if you're in the delivery area. This place is as authentic as it gets, so give it a shot - I've already been 3 times in the past month.
El Rey del Taco
232 Rue Jean-Talon Est
Montréal, QC H2R 1S7