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Mamasita, Melbourne

One of the restaurants I really wanted to try in Melbourne was Movida that was recommended by Trissa as well as Julia, when I met her in Brisbane. Unfortunately, we were in the city over the Easter weekend when the restaurant was closed, much to my disappointment. It was just a stone's throw away from the hotel where we were staying. Sigh... oh well!

However, on the bright side, we discovered a lovely new Mexican joint, Mamasita. It was truly by serendipity. We were walking along Collins street in vain search of a Indian place that was recommended by our concierge, when I noticed this flight of stairs overhanging with people and an unobtrusive sign that said "Mamasita".

Something in the name triggered a vague memory of having come across it somewhere and despite the daunting line, I convinced my friend to do a look-see and perhaps return with reservation. A peek at the menu baited us and we waited a bit for the "host" to check on the wait time. As it happened, most of the people waiting were large groups and us being just two really helped in getting a table ASAP!

Zucchini Blossom & goats cheese tamale with red pepper escabeche

We were seated in a sort of bar style area, without the bar. That is to say, there was a bar in the restaurant, just not where we were. Aside from the typical table seating area, there was a enclosed section of seats that were by the wall, with a view looking out or in or the wall. We got the well.. No worries! :)

We browsed the menu again, this time in more detail. The first thing we noticed was that the prices were unlike what we had been exposed to in Queensland, viz. reasonable. Entrees were in the $20 range. We were unsure of portion sizes but decided to start with one main dish each.

Chili Relleno

My friend being vegetarian chose Chili Rellenos and I chose the Mole, partly because it is indeed the quintessential Mexican dish and hence, the perfect test for the restaurant but also because I wanted to compare with the one I made a few weeks back.

Once we placed our orders, I went around exploring the space. The decor is simple and reminiscent of NYC restaurants. The kitchen is an open layout and Executive Chef Jason, also co-owner of the joint, was friendly and more than happy to let me shoot his creations fresh out of the kitchen!

Chicken Mole

Back at our "table", our dishes were served. As far as portions go, they were on the smaller side. But what they lacked in size they made up for in flavor. My friend, who typically is a sloooow eater, cleaned up her plate in less than 10 minutes!! She could not stop raving about her relleno although she said she could have done with more on the plate. My Mole was light, flavorful and had an edge to it from the hot chilli slices from the garnish and the chicken was perfectly cooked.

Our "host" checked up on us from time to time during the course of our meal and on one such occasion we uncovered the story behind the restaurant. Matt, our "host" and co-owner of Mamasita, is a NYC trained chef who went to Melbourne looking for a restaurant adventure and found it! The restaurant is barely four months old and he is already looking for opportunities in NYC.

Jason and Matt, the owners of Mamasita

Overall, we had a satisfying meal and would definitely recommend anyone in Melbourne to make a stop at Mamasita. And, I am looking forward to Matt's debut in NYC! :)

P.S. The answer to the trivia question in the last post is - Melbourne skyline from St. Kilda pier

Share your creations tagging @ashafsk on Instagram and hashtag #MadeFromFSK