J’s Restaurant – Purvis Street

Latin American cuisine is one of our favourite comfort foods, and we always look forward to visiting restaurants that serve it. I had heard about J’s some time back, but it took me a while to actually visit. Nevertheless, I am glad that I finally did. Situated in the busy Purvis Street, is a cosy little restaurant called J’s Restaurant which serves some great and homely Latin American delicacies. I call it homely as you can sense that the dishes are made with a lot of care. The limited seating space coupled with warm, well-lit ambiance gives a feeling of home. This also makes it a nice place for dining with family and friends. We were promptly attended to on entry. As we were led to our seats, one of the first things that I noticed was a decoration on the wall shaped like a tree. The wall lighting highlighted it nicely and I liked it.

Js restaurant decor

J’s restaurant decor

The Orders
To begin with, they have a separate section for vegetarian menu which was good to see. They offer customization options for vegan and gluten-free requirements. Also, their cheeses are animal rennet free (see website). For appetizers, we ordered their famous ‘Jalapeno Poppers’ which were amazing. The jalapeno peppers are stuffed with mozzarella cheese and fried to a perfect crust on top. Totally recommended.

Jalapeno poppers

Jalapeno poppers at $17


For the main course, we ordered the ‘Vegetarian Quesadillas’ which was a sizable portion. The tortillas were amply filled with veggies and I could taste all of them perfectly along with the cheese – which is how I like my quesadillas. The salad, salsa and sour cream as the sides were just right.

Veg quesadillas

Veg quesadillas at $22

We also ordered the ‘Vegetarian Burrito’ which was huge. It was filled with a spicy mixture of rice, beans, vegetables, and (of course) cheese. Perfect for a hungry diner. This dish is also served with salad, salsa, and sour cream.

Veg burrito

Veg burrito at $23


Sadly, I had no appetite left for desserts and I intend to try when I visit the restaurant next time. Among their desserts, ‘Churros with Bananas and Mangoes’ and ‘Bread and Butter Pudding’ are recommended. Though they do not serve alcoholic beverages, there is no dearth of interesting drink options on their menu like coolers and sodas. The serving staff were friendly and there was very little waiting time for the orders. It is better to reserve in advance as it is approximately a 30-seater place. For catching up with friends, for authentic,tasty and quality Latin American food, and for their homely ambiance, J’s Restaurant is definitely recommended.

In a Nutshell Deelightful Rating
Cuisine Type: Latin American ★★★★
Nearest MRT: Bugis
Address:7 Purvis Street #01-01, Singapore 188586
Timings: http://www.dineatjs.com/contact.php
Website: http://www.dineatjs.com/
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Hombre Cantina [Permanently Closed]

Hola Amigos!!! Yes, that’s how I send each of you best wishes for the new year. This year began with a visit to a Mexican joint. The Mexican wave has swept across Singapore in a big way – and its giving us more places to visit! One of the new entrants in the scene is Hombre Cantina situated along Boat Quay. It fits the bill for a casual outing. We headed there for dinner and it felt like a Mexican joint, thanks to the decor. Wood-panelled walls, Spanish hats hung across nails, interesting pictures adorn the restaurant space which added to the appeal.

Hombre Cantina decor

Hombre Cantina decor

The rooster literally rules the roost at this joint. Right from the restaurant name, to the table tops to the “rules” – the rooster is present everywhere. This is a DIY burrito place which also seems to be a growing trend. The rules were clearly described as can be seen from the image.

Rooster rules

Rooster rules

The Orders
To begin with, we went for the healthy serving of ‘Rice Bowl’. This is basically a burrito without the tortilla served in a bowl. The vegetables were fresh and crunchy and blended well with the rice. The guacamole could have been much better as the real taste of avocado and lime was missing.

Rice bowl

Rice bowl with guacamole at $17

When I was going through their drinks menu, I saw that they had featured the traditional Mexican drink called ‘Horchata’. This is basically a rice-based drink with almonds and has a creamy texture on the whole. If you do not have an appetite for tasting something totally different, then stick to standard choices. I wanted to taste something unique and found it quite OK apart from the fact that it could have been a bit cooler.

Horchata

Horchata at $6


We also went for the usual ‘Vegetarian Burrito’ which was quite filling. I took black beans, pico de gallo, guacamole and medium spice salsa as the components while making my burrito. The tortilla had dried and was a bit difficult to munch but otherwise the taste was quite good. This is priced at $15 excluding the guacamole which comes as an additional topping at $2. Lime infused water is provided (self-service). They also have margaritas and lunch offerings as per the time of the day. In the evenings, there is a gentle breeze which kept us cool and helped us enjoy the meal. The serving staff were friendly and attended to us promptly. On the whole, Hombre Cantina has the potential to garner attention with respect to its location, menu offerings and combo deals, provided it gets the taste on the key ingredients on its menu offerings right. For now, wishing each of you a very Happy New Year and adios.

In a Nutshell Deelightful Rating
Cuisine Type: Mexican ★★★
Nearest MRT: Raffles Place
Address: 53 Boat Quay, Singapore 049842
Timings: Mon-Sat:12 pm -12 am
Website: http://www.hombrecantina.com/

Muchachos

Made my way to Muchachos situated in Tanjong Pagar for dinner. Muchachos in Spanish means “young men” and the restaurant has been started by two friends. Another Mexican joint is always welcome and Muchahos is generating a lot of buzz. It is an exclusive burrito place and has bar-style stools and counters as part of its seating space. It can seat roughly 25 people, so smaller groups are recommended. What immediately caught my attention was that it has the Subway-inspired “Build your own burrito” concept. The burritos are available in two sizes : Regular ($12) and Burritino ($9). Now, burritos at that price point are a steal! The Burritino is a good to have if you’re not hungry enough to finish a large burrito – and that is well-thought out from their end.


The Orders

I first ordered ‘Vegetarian Burritino’ for dinner and that by itself was quite filling. The grilled veggies like bell peppers, lettuce topped with rice and beans were delicious. I took the extra topping of guacamole which was worth it. Also, if you don’t prefer sweet flavors in your burrito, please don’t opt for the pineapple salsa while building your burrito.

Muchachos

Burritos at Muchachos (pic taken from their FB page)

They have extra sauces (for free) to try as combination. If you like the spicy kinds, do try the Valentina and Chile Habanero. They also have some bottled juices. I ordered the thirst quencher called Blood Orange which was as refreshing as promised. Avoid the coconut water (available in a tetra pak) as it is quite bland.

Muchachos is also perfect for takeaways. Their packing is clean and leak-proof and ideal for lunch if you are working around that area. They have friendly staff who try their best to seat you soon. No advance reservations accepted. It definitely was a burrito delight and on my repeat list.

In a Nutshell Deelightful Rating
Cuisine Type: Mexican ★★★★
Nearest MRT: Tanjong Pagar
Address: 22 Keong Saik Road, Singapore 089129
Timings: Mon-Thu: 12.00 pm-10 pm; Fri-Sat: 12.00 pm-2 am
Website: https://www.facebook.com/muchachos.sg

MexOut

Mexican food to me is mainly mouth-watering burritos and tacos. If you want to enjoy that to the fullest at affordable prices, then head right to Mexout situated in Raffles Place. We headed there for dinner, and the first thing that struck me as I entered the restaurant was the interesting décor made up of wooden tables and sofas which gave it a rustic look. The wall art reminded me of plotted maps and the paint can for storing straws helped sell the theme.

Mexout decor

Mexout decor

The menu was clearly written on a chalkboard with vegetarian options clearly highlighted. The place allows you to design your own burrito in simple steps and caters to your food cravings to the fullest. You can add chips and a drink with your main meal for an additional $6.

Mexout menu

Mexout menu


The Orders

We first ordered ‘Chips and Salsa’ as the meal add-on. The chips were crunchy, well seasond and a delight to munch. The salsa along with it could have been slightly better as it was bland.

Chips and salsa

Chips and Salsa at $6

We then moved on to the main course. Their Regular ‘Vegetarian Buritto’ was quite a sizable portion. The filling was generous and the burrito was neatly enclosed in an aluminium wrap. We went for the Black beans, Vegetables De La Cruz, Sour Cream for the filling along with Salsa de La Verde.

We then decided that tacos should not be left behind in this Mexican journey. The ‘Corn Tacos along with Salsa Fresca ‘ were quite tasty but be prepared to have a mess on your hands. They have salsa catering to different spice levels which is a plus in my book.

Corn Tacos at 3 for $13

Corn Tacos at 3 for $13

If you work in the CBD area, this is an ideal place for lunch. They have indoor and outdoor seating, but the seats are limited. I’d suggest avoiding the 7 – 8 PM time slot in the evening. If you are in a large group, I’d recommend reserving a table. Good music and friendly staff along with interesting charts about Mexican food added to the appeal of the restaurant. Some of the interesting quotes that they had put up are ‘Anything tastes good with salsa’ and ‘Life is a combination of magic and tortilla chips’. As a foodie, I agree and it added to the come-back feel of the place.

In a Nutshell Deelightful Rating
Cuisine Type: Mexican ★★★★
Nearest MRT: Raffles Place / Chinatown
Address:39 Pekin Street, #01-01 Far East Square, Singapore 048769
Timings: Mon-Fri: 11.30 am-10 pm
Website: http://mexout.com/