Sunday, 21 August 2011

RESTAURANT REVIEW: Los Cardos, Edinburgh

Los Cardos

A huge hit now for many years in the US, Tex Mex done fast and well is making its much-welcomed way to Edinburgh, first with Illegal Jack's on Lothian Road, and indeed to Leith in the form of Los Cardos. Owner Neil has spent a lot of time across the pond (he's part Coloradan and his wife is the real deal) and found himself realising the potential of the burrito-to-go back in bonny Scotland. It was there, also, that he pondered the possibility of marrying the tastes of two countries with his signature haggis burrito. As an American in Scotland, I of course had to get to the bottom of this!

With a fellow American and burrito connoisseur as co-taste tester, Los Cardos had a tough audience but needn't worry about anything at all. The first sign of satisfaction came with the tortilla chips,which (for us) must be housemade, and they are. Their accompaniment was the housemade salsas, which are such proven successes that two of them (Medium Verde and Roastin' Red) are now bottled and available to enjoy in abundance en su casa.

Next up I had the soft taco trio (prices vary depending on what fillings you choose, up to £6 for 3). I chose a mix of fillings, my favorite of which was the carnitas: pulled pork that's slow-cooked, marinated in verde salsa and uber succulent. The vegetarian filling was a surefire hit with hot blackbeans, grilled peppers and onions plus all the fixings. And, of course, I had to further research their unique concept by quickly devouring a haggis-filled taco and found it wildly delicious and not at all something worth the apprehension I experienced beforehand. It just works.

Now, the burrito (Up to £6). Balmoral chicken anyone? Filled with both haggis and chicken, pinto and black beans, rice, sour cream, salsa and cheese, the bugger was enormous in both size and flavour and, si, mind-bogglingly great. The ‘red tractor chicken’ was grilled and marinated in their chili-citrus concoction. Yum. We both also noted the tasty, fresh soft tortilla - truly a special thing from our perspective.

Go onto to drool over the menu and get yourself the delights of Los Cardos delivered right to your door. (K Smith)

Los Cardos
281 Leith Walk
0131 555 6619

Opening Hours
Sun-Thurs 12-9pm
Fri and Sat 12-10pm
Festival hours will be later!

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