When I first started as a Food Blogger, I quickly learnt that the most popular posts were from new eateries that opened up. I would always aim to visit new establishments within a week of their opening. My first visit to Hispanic Mechanic was no different as I dined in on their third day of opening. Some people might say that it is unfair to visit a restaurant when they haven’t found their feet yet, while others will suggest that a place is fair game once it has opened. Given my first visit wasn’t very memorable, the Adelaide Food Central team was invited back to experience what this place was really about. All food and drink were provided free of charge.
The chicken wings were spot on. They had a nice, golden crunchy coating, were perfectly crispy and not oily at all. The Korean element of this dish came from the gochujang (Korean red pepper paste). The gochujang’s heat blended well with the rich, smoky flavour from the chipotle. Though I preferred the wasabi mayonesa sauce as it was rich and velvety. The combination of the wasabi and lime/lemon juice made it a punchy dipping sauce that was perfect for the wings. The side of pickled julienned daikon and carrots were sweet, mildly spicy, and crunchy. They complimented the crispy wings quite well.
The meatballs themselves were tasty and full of flavour owing to the mixture of spices that were packed inside them. The meat was a little dry but it didn’t ruin the dish. The charred tomato salsa was delicious. It was subtly spicy and had a beautiful smokey flavour from the pre-charred tomatoes. The rich sauce also paired well with the smooth corn porridge.
The star of this dish was the plantains. It was crispy, crunchy and seriously tasty. The bulgogi beef was thinly sliced and well marinated in a delicious sweet and spicy mix of condiments and spices, and was very tender. The apple kim chi was spicy, and the cilantro pesto and chipotle aioli helped tie all the elements together.
The pork was perfectly slow-cooked resulting in pulled pork meat that was juicy and tender. The achiote seasoning had a distinct flavour. Combine that with the acidity of the habanero, tomato and pineapple-orange salsa and you had a dish full of interesting flavours. The pickled onions and cabbage also added a nice crunchy texture to the taco dish.
The slow cooked lamb was simply melt in your mouth stuff. The goat’s curd was mild, tangy and smooth. The flavour was clean and delicate, and it’s subtle saltiness was balanced by the sweetness of the fresh beetroot salsa.
The salad was surprisingly filling and satisfying. The orange segments were sweet and added a light, citrusy freshness to the hearts of palm, frisse and mixed greens. While I am not usually a fan of dates they worked well within the salad as they added a pleasant sweetness to it. The coconut vinaigrette was smooth, creamy and was a perfect dressing to tie all the elements of the salad together.
The chipotle and gochuchang sauce was abundant and full of flavour. It was smoky, spicy and rich. The rice also soaked up all the sticky goodness of the delicious marinade. The pork was moist and succulent, and the meat simply fell off the bone.
The char-grilled chorizos had a beautiful smokey flavour. The rump steak was cooked medium rare, and was tender, moist and juicy with a lovely pink centre. Dipped into the chimmichurri sauce and it was like a match made in heaven. The sweet potato, quinoa and black bean cakes were light, crunchy and golden and not at all oily. They were absolutely delightful.
The Tres Leches was a generous size and beautifully presented. The sponge was light, moist and the coating of cream was smooth and velvety. It came down to preference as to whether there was too much cream in this dish.
The Corn Cake was rich, light and moist. The sweet corn component of the dish reminded me of a Vietnamese dessert. The best part of the dish was the smooth and decadent dulce de leche. Quite similar to a caramel sauce it is made by heating condensed milk as opposed to sugar.
Each and every dish we had tonight was nothing short of spectacular. The menu was slightly changed to what it was 7 weeks ago and it was clear that the dishes had been refined. The staff were friendly, efficient and knowledgeable, which was no different to my first visit. I initially had my doubts about Korean Mexican fusion food but they have indeed pulled it off. Perhaps I won’t be in such a rush to visit every new eatery that opens up in Adelaide!
Words by Linh Nguyen
WHERE: 205 Glen Osmond Rd, Frewville