Written by Jonathan Brouillette on 01.06.16

Montreal is a wealth of all things food, drink, and deliciousness. Unfortunately, there has been one type of food which has been sorely lacking for a long time: Mexican food. Sure, fajitas from random restaurant X are good, but that’s not really Mexican food. It’s just chicken or steak on a grill cut up to be placed on tortillas. And while some restaurants have tried, it wasn’t until very recently that a small spattering of new and interesting restaurants has properly portrayed exciting Mexican food in Montreal.

Escondite Montreal Mexican Restaurant Downtown (11)

Where has this deliciously fruity sweet and peppery spice been hiding? Why… in the hiding place of course. Escondite, Spanish for hiding place, is a hole in the wall full of luchadore memorabilia, delicious tapas-style Mexican food, and more tequila and mescal than a Patron commercial.

Escondite Montreal Mexican Restaurant Downtown (1)

First and foremost, this place has excellent drinks. It sports a short list of signature drinks including El Chingo: a rice pudding tasting drink like no other. It combines homemade Horchata (a rice, almond, and cinnamon drink) with bourbon and lime. Can’t imagine the taste? It literally tastes like an amazing alcoholic rice pudding. There is also the Mojito del’King, a drink worthy of its name. Mojitos are great alone, but add pineapple and jalapeño to the mix and you have a sweet, spicy, and fresh combination you may just down before you even realize.

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The food is equally delicious and standout. Rarely has a salad been as amazing as the Ensalada de Mangos. A julienned mix of mango, cucumber, and chilies with peanuts and crunchy shallots and a lime flavoured Chamoy dressing. The light flavours mix together so well that it feels as though every bite mixes all the best flavours of the Caribbean.

Escondite Montreal Mexican Restaurant Downtown (10)

The tacos Al Pastor are also delicious with the classic combination of pork, pineapple, onion, and cilantro. No truer incarnation of small soft tacos has ever existed. Finally, for something a little less Mexican, try Papi Chulo’s Pork Ribs. They combine a chipotle BBQ sauce with black cherry and succulent ribs. Finally, it needs to be said that the churros here are just to die for. We would be fine going to Escondite for only these smaller, deep fried, raw sugar coated, Nutella dipped churros… Mmm…. Where were we? Oh. The Churros. They are good. Really, really good.

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Escondite is a beautiful thing. It combines delicious food with great drinks and a decidedly playful Mexican atmosphere. It would be great for a 5 à 7 or a late night of debauchery. We are grateful for its introduction of quality Mexican food to a city starved for it! And those churros…

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1206 Avenue Union, Montréal, QC H3B 3A7
(514) 419-9755

Photos by Dahlia Merlo (@dahllii) and Escondite (@escondite_mtl).

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