Friday, February 07, 2014

Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food At Universal CityWalk Review

This week I went to the opening night media event at Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food at Universal CityWalk. The first thing I noticed was that it is just a cool place. The outside of the building is bright and fun, and begs you to sit down for a drink and some chips and salsa.

Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food at Universal Orlando CityWalk

Top 40 Mariachi Band

Antojitos is actually two restaurants in one. Downstairs you find a mixture of wood and metal, with neon lights, graffitied walls, and a large stage where a Mariachi Band plays Top 40 hits. It is the perfect balance of funky and fun. Antojitos Up has more of a classy restaurant feel, complete with leather seats and a menu with a higher price point. Both levels have open kitchens and incredible food.

Antojitos Interior

The Food
Let's talk Mexican Food. It is my favorite. The whole night I was torn between trying to practice moderation so I could try everything, and eating enough to officially no longer fit into any pair of pants I own. I think I fell somewhere in the middle.

That's a lie. I ate everything.

I started with Talmolitso Fritos, which is little fried balls of roasted corn tamale served with guajillo aloli. It was amazing. I restrained myself from turning up the bowl of guajilo aloli and drinking it straight.

Enchiladas Verdes

We were given three versions of enchiladas. The Enchiladas Vegetarianas was the best vegetarian moment I have ever had, the Enchiladas Verdes had a green sauce that achieved verdes perfection, but the Enchiladas Oaxaca with house made mole sauce and lime crema was my favorite of the three.

Enchiladas Oaxaca

Mexican food isn't complete without tacos. From a traditional chicken taco with a pineapple kick to a taco with duck confit, there are tacos for every taste.

The thing I went back for thirds for (yes, thirds, I have no shame when it comes to Mexican food) was the Carne Asada Brava - coffee crusted ribeye with fire roasted vegetables and espresso butter.

Carne Asada Brava

I can not express in words how amazing it was. Or how I want all my butter to be espresso butter. Forever.

The Guacamole
Yes, guacamole gets its own section. I love it that much. On both levels of Antojitos you can have fresh guacamole prepared tableside for $13.95. This was something I was very much looking forward to, and I am happy to report that it did not disappoint.

Tableside Guacamole at Antojitos

The guacamole was perfect with the fresh-made, house prepared tortilla chips and salsa.

The Drinks
I didn't try the alcoholic beverages, because that is just not my thing. But I was impressed by the number of unique mixed drinks and the 200 tequilas they offer. I didn't even know there were 200 different kinds of tequila in the world.

The big drink excitement for me was icy cold, glass bottles of authentic Mexican Coke. If you haven't tried it, you might not know that Mexican Coke is different from regular American Coke, but it is. Made with real sugar instead of high fructose corn syrup, it is sweet without the slight aftertaste that you are used to having. They also have Mexican Sprite and Original Fanta.

The Desserts
After all of that eating, it was time to have dessert, and I tried each one.

Molten Cajeta de Leche Cake

The Molten Cajeta de Leche was my friend Lee's favorite dessert. The lava center is made with a caramelized milk that was amazing, and the cake was perfectly light and fluffy. The scoop of ice cream is actually sour creme flavored, which was really unique. It was an unexpected taste, but I really enjoyed the contrast of taste with the dark chocolate.

Antojitos Dessert Platter

My favorite dessert was the Coffee Creme Brulee with Churros. The best way I can describe it is a creamy flan with a crunchy coffee layer on top. You have to try dipping the churros in the creamy flan. Dessert perfection. I also enjoyed the chocolate banana cake and the cinnamon sorbet, but the Coffee Creme Brulee with Churros has my heart, and is the dessert I encountered in my dreams last night. Plan on buying all the dessert when you visit Antojitos. You won't be sorry.

The Fun
After you eat, you can pick up a hand painted keepsake mask. There are ten different masks to choose from with Luchador or Dia De Los Muertos designs, but they will also add special details or extras if you ask. It is fun to watch them paint the masks, and have something to take home with you.

Handpainted Masks

Antojitos is a lot of fun. The food is amazing. The atmosphere is unique.

We had a great night.

Did I mention that the food is amazing? It is.

You can check out the menus for Antojitos and Antojitos Up at Universal Orlando CityWalk. It is open from 5pm to midnight each night. It would be the perfect stop after a day spent at the theme park, or just for a great night out.

*I was given free food at Antojitos, but I was not required to write this post, say nice things, or eat my weight in guacamole.

29 comments:

  1. Oh this place sounds FAB!! MUST try it out!

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  2. I love, love, love Mexican place. There is a fantastic little restaurant near me, but the best Mexican food I ever had was in Old Town in San Diego.

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    1. Everyone should live near a good Mexican food restaurant.

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  3. Looks like a fun place. I have never been to Universal. Everytime I go to Orlando I am at Disney. I am hoping to try it out sometime soon.

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    1. Oh my goodness. You HAVE to visit Universal the next time you are in Orlando. They have so much great stuff going on right now (the Diagon Alley/London Harry Potter expansion is coming this summer - SO awesome) that you don't want to miss.

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  4. Looks like you guys had a blast!
    I would love to take the kids there and show them that GOOD Mexican food doesn't come out of a box. **snicker**

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    1. It was a total blast.

      Your kids would love it! :)

      I know what you mean about the box - my kid is pretty sure that most food comes from drive thrus. hehe

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  5. I'm with you on loving Mexican food. It is our favorite! When we go to Universal I will have to stop in there! It looks absolutely yummy.

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  6. We have got to visit this place soon! The food looks and sounds delicious!

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  7. I love this! We have so much Mexican influence here and it's such a wonderful culture!

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  8. These plates look amazing, I like the idea of duck comfit and pineapple added to tacos. I am always looking for new fillings and alterations of Mexican food and this article gave me plenty.

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  9. Oh my goodness! I love Mexican food and that looks absolutely amazing. I would have eaten my weight in guacamole too.

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  10. I would love to eat here! Seriously. My mouth was watering just looking at all this food :)

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  11. I love Mexican food and that food looks unbelievable! We are heading to Florida soon and if we can fit it in, I think we will go!

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  12. How did I miss this place?? I was at CityWalk twice last week. Would have been cool to bump into YOU!

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  13. Looks really cool! I must try the Enchiladas Oaxaca

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  14. It looks like the food was great! This looks like so much fun!

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  15. we are hoping to plan a trip to universal in the near future so we'll def. have to pop in at antojitos- it looks amazing!

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  16. What a fun place! We are planning a trip to Universal! This is going to be a must stop for us!

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  17. That sounds amazing. My husband is from Cali and loves authentic Mexican food. I'll have to remember this restaurant next time we're in Orlando.

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  18. That food looks absolutely amazing! I am a huge fan of good Mexican food and the whole time I was reading this, I keep thinking please have a recipe even though I knew it was a restaurant review. I do make a pretty good guacamole though! Wish I lived near enough to go there!

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  19. I am starving and this is the wrong post to read right now. MUST EAT SALA-Y FOODS NOW!!!!!

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  20. Love Mexican food, this looks yummy - love how they have table side!

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  21. That food looks so amazing. We used to love to visit Universal City Walk when we lived in Florida. I wonder if that used to be called the Latin Quarters?

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  22. Now this looks like it was a really fun event, and that food looks delish, looks very authentic!!! I would love to go to something like this.

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