Updated: Jul 27, 2021
You may come for the tequila and margaritas, but you’ll stay for the aesthetic.
Although the colorful website and tequila drinks would have been enough to entice us, the short but sweet menu was another draw. Everything sounded delicious, and coming from Chicago, we were instantly lured by the promise of upscale Mexican; after all, who doesn’t love tacos?
We were looking forward to trying the chef’s tasting menu because so many dishes appealed to us; yet sadly, we were informed they could not accommodate a pescatarian version on short notice, so we ordered a la carte from the regular menu. To our pleasant surprise, there were still several winners.
Our server expertly recommended the avocado tostada which turned out to be one of our favorite dishes of the night. What we thought would be a lack luster attempt, was actually a quite complex delight. Don’t you love it when you are wrong about something? It was the mole poblana that set this starter up for success.
We also indulged in the shrimp ceviche which was fantastically limey; however, it was not served with chips, which for us is a necessity. Yet, it did get us to buy the guac and chips so touché Nixta, score one for you this time.
For our mains, we went with the vegetable plate and the fish tacos. The fish tacos were insanely crispy, with a perfect breading ratio, to the point we literally wanted to know their secret. However, the verduras plate left something to be desired. The pistachio mole was good, but not enough to carry the dish. Twenty dollars for a plate of essentially just brussels sprouts isn’t going to wow (at least not in a good way). More veggies next time please!
If you are a tequila fiend, this is probably the perfect place for you, since they have hundreds of varieties of tequila to choose from. Unfortunately, that is not really our jam and the cocktails left one of us wanting. Particularly, we wished their presentation went up a caliber or two. It’s the simple details of a garnish and a glass that can turn a drink into a true cocktail.
Although they sold out of the churros before we could place our dessert order, they made up for it when our server surprised us with a comped Tres Leches instead. It was like no other we have ever had, but it was heavenly. The mascarpone and strawberry was divine!
Another highlight was the pretty exceptional service. Servers were attentive and sly. The true test of good service is if you can sometimes forget they are even there. Our server changed halfway through the meal and it was such a seamless transition, we hardly noticed until the night was over.
Our favorite part of Nixta, however, is the overall ambiance. The warmth from Nixta pours onto the sidewalk, emitting from the playful patterns and brightly colored hues on the building’s façade. The vivid walls, mosaics, and the plethora of foliage, created a palette we could live under for the rest of our days. The space is beautifully decorated, while maintaining a clean and modern feel, including the restrooms (see the Loo Review for more). It was a cozy space that we’d say is ideal for a hot date, or a girls night out! Intimate, but lively in every way, the aesthetic is what dreams are made of. Definitely worth the trip, our only true regret was filling up on too many chips!
Hopefully, we can return on a steamy summer’s night, with the front garage door open, so we can feel fully transported by the warmth and the sounds of the street. With a margarita in hand, we can pretend we’ve left pandemic times, and America, far behind in the rearview.