Rosa Mexicano

900 South Miami Avenue, Miami, 33130, United States

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Rosa Mexicano is a mini-chain of Mexican eateries that started in New York city in 1984, and which has slowly expanded to other locations (nine in all at the time of writing), including this one in the Miami downtown area. It is part of a little retail development called Mary Bricknell Village, in a relatively respectable looking part of the downtown, which is in general a concrete monstrosity. There are a few tables outside, and a large dining room inside which was very dark even on this bright sunny lunchtime.

The guacamole is made fresh rather than being from a jar, and is served in a stone tureen with tortilla chips and a few small tortillas. Although the avocado tasted fine and it was quite spicy, it was also seriously over-salted, even for my taste (maybe 11/20 if I am kind). A main course of enchilada suiza ($12.75) had a pair of unmemorable flour tortillas filled with cheap pulled roast chicken, and an odd bland sauce given the potent guacamole (between 10/20 and 11/20). Rice on the side was pleasant, though refried beans were a grey mush.

For a simple Mexican restaurant there were some surprising wines e.g. Zind Humbrecht Riesling Heimbourg 2004 at $80 (retail price $29) was not the kind of thing I was expecting here. Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc 2008 at $30 represents fair value for a wine that costs $15 retail, and there was even the excellent Guigal Brune et Blonde 2001 at $95 compared to a shop price of about $45. Alternatively there is a range of beers, including the excellent Bohemia, though at $6 a bottle it is hardly cheap.

Overall, although this restaurant claims to be “elevating” Mexican cooking, the dishes I tried were a long way from the best Mexican food I have eaten at some other places in the USA. Service was pleasant if a little perfunctory. It was a harmless enough place, and if you were in the area and fancied a Mexican meal I suspect you could do worse, but it is not a place to make a special trip to.

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