Taqueria Playa Tropical is a newly renovated Mexican restaurant serving authentic tacos, quesadillas, burritos and much more.
Well, its my turn again to head out to New West for some culinary eats. My buddy decided on this place as he and his wife have been here several times before. I have to admit I was skeptical as my usually stomping ground for tacos was on cambie and broadway. New West and Mexican food???Huh?? Anyways, we decided on lunch wednesday . Parking is basically everywhere...paid parking on 6th Street or on the side streets. I was lucky to find a 1 hour free spot on a side street.
The restaurant looked pretty small as I was walking in to find out they actually did renos and expanded to the store next door. My buddy and his wife were already seated and waited for me.... ambiance...look good....solid wooden chairs and tables with splashes of bright colors on the walls. Checking out the menu I decided on the Ceviche ($7) and 4 different tacos: 2 Al pastors, 1 Camaron and 1 Pescado ($2.50 each) plus a pop ($2). My buddy and his wife got the Pozole Rojo soup ($10) , Carne Asada ($13) and chicken Flautas($11) house platters with two glasses of ice water. The waitress was friendly but her English was okay but the good thing was my buddy's wife spoke fluent Spanish!! Thank Goodness!!
In no time...we were served a complimentary bowl of pastel colored tortilla chips with squeeze bottled red and green salsa. The chips were standard but the salsas were the stand outs...flavorful with or without a bit of heat.In about 10 minutes, I got my ceviche with chips and they got the big bowl of Pozole. The Ceviche was quite tasty!!! The combination of diced basa fish in lime juice (the acid cooks the fish) with a mixture of cilantro, onions, tomatoes and avocado was a treat in my mouth. The best??? No but a good second. The best I ever had was at my old work place where another buddy of mine made it in house...used top notch ingredients: diced halibut, scallops and cooked shrimp.. same mixture but cucumbers instead of avocados.
The main attractions arrived just a bit later. The tacos....seems strange..... only one soft tortilla usually there are two. Anyways rather than bitch about it...eat man!! The al pastors (marinated pork, diced onions, cilantro and pineapple tibbits) were very good...good meaty favor with a touch of sweetness. Usually my GOTO taco. The camaron taco ( garlicky shrimp, celery, onions, cilantro, and melted cheese) was a combination of sweetness, crunch and creamness in my mouth....that was also very good . But the piece de resistance was the pescado taco ( garlicky fish fillet, celery, onions, cilantro and melted cheese)..this thing just melted in my mouth...this one was excellent.
All in all a very good meal. I asked them about their selections....they said very good as well. My buddy was stuffed....he barely finished his carne asada platter (grilled sirloin steak with side of rice pilaf, refried beans pico de gallo and 3 corn tortillas). His wife gave me a piece of the chicken flautas( 4 corn tortillas rolled with shredded chicken,then deep fried. Topped with cheese, tomato, onion, cilantro ,guacamole and sour cream with an addition of salsa roja)...its very good...chicken was tender, tortilla was crisp and saucy..the blend of topping just took it over the top. So for some real authentic Mexican food...stop here..of all the places..New West..GO FIGURE?? Thanks for reading!!
We work in New West. Its always hard finding a place to take out lunch thats AMAZING. We have good lunches but this place is AMAZING! The waitresses at lunch are all super quick and on the ball. Always people sitting at tables and when they come up and pay you hear nothing but great things about the food. I believe its a family business of sorts. As I am typing this I am planning on my lunch order for today LOL.
Their CEVICHE is one of the best I have ever had. And to be able to get it for lunch and enjoy it in the office is a total joy. Lots of lime and avacado, its wonderful.
NACHOS! To Die For! The price is beyond amazing and its fantastic. BURRITOS and ENCHILLADAS are on point. Homemade Guac and the Pico is stellar. Cant say enough good things about this restaurant. Give it a try!
This place is ALWAYS busy, so finding out about the Grand Opening that took place yesterday, was sublime.
So much that we've made reservations for Nana's birthday next weekend! Woo-hoo!
Oh, don't forget! They have live music and dancing, if you're so inclined, on Friday nights, starting at 6:30 p.m.
Especially now that it's Spring Break, it gives the busy families bring their kids in and have lots fun. The kids were running around as much as the staff were.
So they have officially placed some of our favorites on the menu such as the Tostadas and the Monster Burrito.
I've been to other Mexican restaurants and this one beats them all!
Ordered take out today with some girlfriends who suggested this restaurant. They order from here quite often and love the food, so I thought I would try it out. I had the Carnita's and Alambre tacos and they were delicious! Although they are very cheap...I could eat 5 or 6 on my own because they are relatively small. That or I'm a big eater. I'm definitely going to get it again.
I discovered this place the day it opened last year. My girlfriend and I frequent this spot. The service is friendly. The food is well seasoned, nicely prepared and freshly made. We love the Choriqueso and Fish tacos the best. We have tried most of everything on the menu over the past year and it is all really tasty. We go at least twice a month, be warned however the fresh-made salsas can be pretty spicy. This spot is always a good meal and a good value.
Make sure to try the Flan for dessert.
Having worked at a Mexican food place prior to ever eating here, I have a standard of where I like my food. Not wishing to return to my prior employer for a bite, we tried Playa Tropical. I was delighted to find the salsa roha verde in the bottles were very authentic to third generation Mexcican, and also very good. (The second time we went the salsa roha was not good but verde was still delicious) We ordered the steak sandwich, shrimp quesadilla and two tacos: pork and fish. The steak sandwich was average, but the quesadilla was incredible. Delicious, served with pico de gaillo, guacamole and sour cream at no extra charge was a pleasant surprise. The tacos are small but also very cheap which explains the price, they are all topped differently and are quite tasty.
The waitresses both times we attended the restaurant were not very interested in us and we had to wait quite a while for our bill after finishing our food, but thats what you get when you hire careless teenagers. I will definitely go back and enjoy the much more authentic mexican food in comparison to taco del mar and chronic tacos.
You come to a place like this for the authentic tacos, burritos ect...you usually put up with the service. While they are extremely friendly - the place is family run- you can have a bit of a wait for service when its busy, so be patient...it's worth it. And its getting busier as the neighbourhood figures out how good the food is. Tacos are the best bet - make sure you try the chorizqueso - chorizo sausage and cheese. The shrimp are also amazing. Actually I can't think of a bad choice. Most are $2 a piece. I find 4-6 make a meal and you get taco chips to start. A cold beer is a must with these.
Nice family restaurant with good food and cosy atmosphere. This is a third restaurant at the same location in a last few years so I’m hoping "Third time's the charm" as we need more Mexican restaurants in New Westminster. I’m definitely coming back for both dine in and take out.
Three, disappointed - that would best describe us after our experience at Taqueria Playa Tropical. It was a really nice sunny day and we arrived, hungry and thirsty, and were sat at our table with a smile. Things looked good. Because it was around Easter they had some pastel coloured chips - nice touch, but the chips were stale - all 10 of them... with no real salsa anywhere near. Ah well.. I had a slight sinking feeling, knowing that so many Mexican restaurants across Canada and especially the lower mainland are really poorly executed. But I can drive 2 hours to Seattle and get amazing Mexican food, authentic and priced for value!
Anyhow, back to the Taqueria Playa Tropical - the burrito I ordered had a TOUGH (stale) flower tortilla that was hard to cut. Inside was a luke-warm mix of steak (carne asada) with miniscule bits of cheese, if any cheese, but a TON of onions. The steak was so chewy and full of sinew and gristle that I had to spit half of it out. This is supposed to be a nice steak burrito! Oh, for $2.50 you can add rice and beans to the burritos. We did the side of beans, which came as a sloppy mess - cold and decorated with a sour cream design?! Yuck. This was all wrong. One at our table sent her beef tacos back because the beef was salted to the point it was like beef jerky. Over seasoned, and we insisted it was taken off the bill. I really wanted to like this place and find a good Mexican restaurant. but this wasn't it.
The atmosphere is extremely casual... maybe they should learn to do a great plate of nachos, push the booze and not try to pretend to do signature dishes from Mexican cuisine. This was terrible, but our server did a good job remaining friendly in spite of the low quality food. It was a great sunny day and nice to get out of there and go home to my bottle of antacid!
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