Frida - la Casa Azul

I'll start with the common notion that great authentic Mexican is hard to find in Toronto and since I have been hearing the most amazing and intoxicating reviews for this place, it was on my must try list.  The verdict is this restaurant is a really great recommendation for Mexican in Midtown!  I Named after the famous Mexican artist with the bushy stern black eyebrows and despite Frida's famed hard gaze,  it is classy and decorated in the style of her Casa Azul (translated as the blue house) in deep blues tiles with splashes of orange and red.  The service was excellent and they made you feel at ease as you walked in.

After ordering a bottle of Malbec, we were served immediately with a helping of homemade tortilla strips with two types of salsas- a salsa verde and another, tomato based spicier salsa- there were so fresh and appetizing and definitely wet our palettes!
All the appetizers on the menu looked very appetizing and we just couldn't choose one each, so we ordered three choosing to forgo the guacamole which would've been our fourth appetizer as we also wanted to get 2 mains... (however according to the other reviews- I must come back for the guacs).  After ordering, we were served an amuse bouche (a true sign that a good meal is coming in my eyes!), it was an offering of a special mini tortilla with fried onion, cheese and salsa on top and it was a one bite delicacy- delicioso!!

For our appetizers, we chose the seafood ceviche - which was our favourite dish of the evening.  The scallops were tender, the shrimps were succulent, the mussels were great and the lime juice was the perfect contract to the textures of the cerviche and everything was very fresh.  We also ordered the duck 'carnita' mini tacos which were a good blend of flavours tangy, but very tender as well as the enchiladas barbacoa with lamb in a borracha (drunken) sauce.  Borracha is my favourite word to use in Spanish- 'yo no estoy muy borracha ahora' - "I am not that drunk right now" is a phrase I commonly throw around.  Anyway the lamb enchiladas were my least favourite of the 3 dishes however it was well cooked and the sauce was really winey - the gaminess of the lamb overpowered the dish for me.  All in all - the appetizers were very well done!
The mains to be honest were lackluster and we felt they were dry and not as interesting in flavour as our dishes before.  I had the Pescano a la Veracruzana- pan fried halibut with capers. olives in a tomato sauce on a bed of vegetables - definitely would try something different.  As I said above - it was dry.  My dining partner- Mary had one of their specials and I can't even remember anything of it except we were less than impressed.   It says something when I can't remember what she had.  
Time of dessert?! We were stuffed by the time our waiter came and asked if we wanted dessert and of course, for the sake of research, we had a peek at the menu.  Of course we eneded up ordering the dessert platter because we couldn't choose one to share!  This is a good tip because you get to try 2 desserts and saves you $2!  
We picked the churros. Oh, the churrrrrrrr-rros. DELICIOSO!!  They are perfectly crispy dusted with sin-amon (I mis-spelt on purpose) , and were perfectly fluffly and melted in your mouth served with a goat's milk caramel sauce to die for.  We also had the Khalua cheesecake - OMG - it was soooo good!!!  It was velvety and felt light and the flavour was so rich- they were the perfect pair!  The desserts redeemed the meal altogether!!!  

Aye Aye Arriba, I'm fired up just telling you about the dinner! Hasta Luego - I will be back (said like Schwarzenegger)
**** stars
Frida- 999 Eglinton Avenue West (Just east of Allen Road)
Tues. - Sat. 6:00pm - close
Live music Tues. and Sat.

Dinner for 2 with a bottle of wine- $180 with gratuity

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