This Week's Restaurant Review, The Condensed Version: Corazon y Miel
Anne FishbeinCeviche at Corazon y Miel
Location: Corazon y Miel is interesting in part because of its location in Bell, a working class neighborhood with plenty of great dining options, but not a lot in the way of trendy foodie destinations. For an ambitious chef (who used to cook at Animal) to set up shop here is an evolution for the city's dining scene.
Food: Gastropub cooking, mainly influenced by Mexico and Latin America. While there are no tacos or other Mexican mainstays, there are a lot of creative riffs on the snacks and street foods of Mexico. A lot of this is fun and delicious, but some of it needs work.
Drinks: From the review: "The bar is manned by Christian Pulido, and there's something for everyone on this drinks list: horchata with vodka, Kahlua and amaretto; sticky-sweet rum coconut concoctions, garnished with a Popsicle; odd margaritas made with vodka and spruced up with candied tamarind; a couple of fantastic pisco cocktails with the requisite of-the-moment bitter finish. Flavored shots are available in groups of three for $8. There are traditional sangrita and tequila combos, as well as micheladas and margaritas. There's wine as well, but you don't want it."
Service: Sassy. The waitress I had on all my visits was friendly and helpful, but didn't hesitate to correct a guest's pronunciation ("just so you know, it's pronounced ..."), and straight-up argue with the table next to us when an entree was either forgotten or not ordered ("I even read your order back to you!"). Most nights this girl runs the floor pretty much on her own, so all that sass comes in handy when trying to wait on 10 tables at once.
Takeaway: 2 stars (good). Craft cocktails and an ambitious crew of young talented chefs are a joy to see popping up in this unexpected location. The food is often delicious, and the prices are amazing. It has a ways to go before becoming a must-try restaurant, but there's no doubt this restaurant has its heart (hearts, really) in the right place.