Sunday, September 27, 2015

El Rey Review

This is for a series of posts for Stephen Starr restaurants including:
Alma de Cuba, Barclay Prime, Butcher and Singer, Continental Midtown & Martini Bar, The Dandelion, El Rey, El Vez, Jones, Parc, Pizzeria Stella, Route 6 [1], Route 6 [2], & Square Burger.

One of our favorite places to get Mexican food in Philly is Stephen Starr's El Vez. So it's no surprise that El Vez's sister restaurant, El Rey, offers similar tastes executed in prototypical Starr fashion, along with a speakeasy in the form of the Ranstead Room out back.

The GF and I stopped by for their lunch special, which features chips and salsa as well as appetizer and an entree for less than $10! Pretty much a steal, especially in the business district. So let's get on with it - and apologies for the cell phone pics!

Comida Corrida "Fast Lunch" [$9.99 pp]

Freshly fried chips came with salsa verde and roja with some kick. Nothing wrong with this! 

Chorizo, chihuaha cheese, black beans, pickled jalapeno, habanero-mint salsa

The nacho app was a veritable melange of smoky, spicy chorizo, hearty black peans, and some more of those fresh tortilla chips. There was plenty of Mexican cheese with some pickled japalenos and habanero-mint salsa to provide acid and kick to each bite. 

Warm corn salad, habanero butter

The Mexican street corn salad was nice. The sweet corn had some bite to it, while the habanero butter provided some spice, which was tempered by the fresh tomatoes.

Enchiladas Mineras
Red salsa, chicken, potato, carrots, lettuce, cream, queso fresco

The GF's enchiladas were great with moist chunks of chicken interspersed throughout a creamy and hearty mix of potato, carrots, and cheese. There was some nice smokiness from the red sauce as well.

Carne y Huevos 
Grilled steak, potatoes, peppers, sunny-side up egg, asada salsa 

On this particular day, there was a steak and eggs special so I went with that. It came with 6 corn tortillas and a perfectly seared and well-seasoned medium-rare steak. The fried egg on top added some richness, while the accompanying potatoes were nicely crisp. The asada salsa tied everything together. 

So if you're looking for a lunch-time deal or some Mexican fare to tie you over with drinks during Happy Hour, I'd check out El Rey. It's essentially a more casual version of the always hopping El Vez.

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