Please Feed Me

Guacamole, please.

Caliente Cab Company

As a California transplant to NYC, if we are going to talk food, my biggest gripe is the lack of great Mexican here.  I am a spoiled girl from the West Coast.  I’m used to it being amazing.  I know I should know better than to expect that here, considering the location and vicinity of the city to Mexico.  However, since NYC is a foodie’s heaven, you wouldn’t think that finding a decent Mexican place would be so rough people.  It is though.  It is rough with a capital R.  At this point for me, attempting to find a place that actually tastes like authentic Mexican is right up there with finding the perfect chocolate chip cookie.  I’m not going to stop searching.

Like I said, I am a spoiled Californian.  I miss my sunshine.  I miss my fresh produce.  And I miss my Mexican food.  So Saturday night, it was on.   I was sold on the idea of chips, guacamole, and margaritas, and found myself sitting at the Caliente Cab Company in Murray Hill hoping that the search was over.

Sadly, I am still looking.

The restaurant on 3rd Avenue is actually part of a chain.  There are two other locations in Manhattan, and apparently one in the Newark airport.   Rationale would have you believe that  if they have locations sprouting up in NYC, they must be doing something right.   Then again, the whole food in airport thing should have been a warning.  Is Caliente Cab Company worth a trip?  Yes and no.

Let’s start with the free Chips and Salsa. I was glad it was free.  Salsa was a little bland.  And I don’t know about you, but I don’t trust tortilla chips that come in different colors.  Those red ones, never taste as good as the plain old white corn.  These ones were no exception. The Guacamole de Molcajete although large in portion, was sadly, neither memorable or forgettable.  And although they get plus points with me because of the fact they had Huaraches (Fried masa dough that is flattened and fried so its soft in the middle but crunchy on the outside, and spread with beans, choice of meat, lettuce, tomato, and a cheese) on the menu, there was nothing extra ordinary about them.  My Huaraches was ordered with chicken, which was a tad on the flavorless side, and essentially got pushed aside for the lettuce.  Yes, lettuce.  In general, the food here is mediocre.  The margaritas though – totally different story!

All I have to say is – thank goodness for alcohol.

For $12.95, you get your margarita served in a hurricane souvenir glass (that you can keep).  Not only is it a large glass, but at Caliente, it comes in 15+ flavors, on the rocks or frozen.  I got the Coconut, frozen, and it was the highlight of the night.  I think it was *the* redeeming thing about the meal.  Perfectly mixed – not too icy, and the flavor was consistent throughout.  This margarita was like dessert in alcoholic form.  Sadly, that drink was not enough to push me to appreciate the restaurant as a whole.

Overall, this place is ok – but nothing to write home about.


5 out of 10 stars

Caliente Cab Company
488 3rd Ave (between 33rd St & 34th St)
New York, NY 10016

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  1. * juice says:

    ha, I use to have 6 hour breaks between classes in college and would go there for happy hour because the drinks were so cheap…usually ended up falling asleep in my evening classes because of that.

    | Reply Posted 9 years ago

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