Friday, February 10, 2012

La Cholita - Northbridge

A week or so ago I won 4 tickets to see Super Night Shot at Studio Underground at the State Theater of WA as part of the Perth International Arts Festival, which was pretty awesome - free night out! The tickets were worth $50 each so I was pretty stoked to have won them! I asked Carolanne (of Carolannes Kitchen) and Mr T to come out with us, and we decided that we'd better go and have something to eat first. It started at 8:30 and after all, one mustn't go into the theater without filling ones belly with all manner of delicious things! We decided that since we were in Northbridge, we'd have to try the much hyped La Cholita.

I'd read that you need to get there early to get a table, as if you wait for later on in the night its going to be a 2 hour wait! There's no way Id ever wait that long for a table anywhere, so S went there after work at about 5ish to score us a place in the waiting area. You can order drinks, corn chips with dip, entrees and tostadas in the waiting area, to tide you over until you get into the eating area. We ordered Pico de Gallo, a sangria ($6) and a Dos Equis beer while we waited for our dining companions to arrive.

S didn't like the Dos Equis at all, it had no flavour - it was like drinking beer flavoured water! Wont be bothering with that beer anymore! The Pico de Gallo was nice - chopped tomatoes, onions, coriander, with a hint of chilli and a generous squeeze of lime. The corn chips were slightly denser than I'd like but still tasty. I would have liked to have tried to guacamole but S doesn't really like it much so I left that one!

When we were ready (they won't seat you in the eating area until your whole party has arrived), we were seated at a cool bench by the bar, and our drinks orders taken. I liked the sangria enough to get 500ml of it, which was $15 - pretty good value! I found it to be very fruity and easy to drink, there wasn't as much of a red wine taste as Im used to - but on a hot, humid day, it was icy cold and went down a treat!

S and I ended up ordering the wood fired Black Angus beef with chimmichurri, a pulled pork and pineapple taco, a beef cheek taco, mexican rice and tortillas. Carolanne and Mr T got the street corn, guacamole,  Mole Negro chicken, wood fired pork hock, and refried beans. When you order they bring out 4 sauces for you to use with your meals, which was a nice touch! There was salsa verde, chilli, fresh limes and I think yoghurt and mayo.

I managed to snag one of their pieces of corn and it was delicious! I loved it. Blackened on the outside, with a creamy dressing and some spices that none of us could put our fingers on! They were great, Id love to try and recreate these at home!

Our beef came out first, probably 10mins before anyone else got anything. It wasn't great that we had to wait for our sides to come out, and the beef had started to go a bit cold by that stage - we ate some when it was hot anyway though of course! It was delicious, tender, charred on the outside and the chimmichurri was great. Gave it the extra boost of flavour that a well cooked steak pairs so well with. It was a lot chunkier than any chimmichurri I've had before but I still enjoyed it.

We eventually got our sides and tacos, and the others got theirs too. The pork hock looked so awesome, meltingly tender and falling off the bone. I had a little piece and it was yummy - but we all agreed that the huge layer of fat over it would have been put to far  better use had they made crackling out of it... waste of pork fat!! We also tried their mole negro chicken, and while the others really liked it and said it was their fave, S and I didn't like the sauce. It was really nutty, and I just didn't really enjoy that flavour paired with the chicken so much.

Our tacos were nice, they're really small and really only good for one person (tho S and I shared ours!). The pork and pineapple was nice but I would have liked to have gotten way more flavour from the pineapple - I couldn't taste it nearly as much as I wanted to. The pork was nice, juicy with a good flavour. The beef cheek was S's fave, though I found it a little dry. We used the sauces they gave us but I thought they gave us so little of each one that I was paranoid about using too much of it. I enjoyed them but they didn't blow my mind really.

Our rice was alright, quite dry but had alot of flavour. It was really warmly spiced with something like cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg or something similar. It was a very small serve though and would feed 2 ppl max, the bowl would have been the size of my palm and maybe an inch n a bit deep - so not a huge serve! But you didn't need much of it anyway... Our tortillas were nice, and come 3 to a serving. Home made, slightly thicker than what you might be used to from supermarkets, but tasty.

The boys then ordered a tequila (one of their 67 varieties!), which comes with a shot of sangrita, a non alcoholic tomato based chaser which cuts all the harshness out of the spirit. The boys were pretty blown away by how it erased the burn and left them with a totally clean palate! Their tequilas range from $8 - $120 so theres something there for you!

Mr T also ordered the mango, lime and chilli tart, which I snaffled a bite from. The base was light and flakey, and the lime topping was sweet and sharp, with a tiny sprinkle of chilli on top. There was some fresh mango sliced up on the side as well which Mr T said worked really well with the tart.

We spent $240 between 4 of us, including drinks, so its not the cheapest night out. The atmosphere is great there, though a little loud, not the place for a first date perhaps! Its decorated with all kinds of kitschy knick knacks, and the glass panels in the floor are pretty cool too! The staff were all very friendly though sometimes they took a while to get to your table, you pretty much have to flag one down if you want something.

I'd go back, but I wouldn't race back. Partially because you have to get there so early to get a table, partially because while the food was nice, it didn't blow me away. 

La Cholita on Urbanspoon


  1. wow.. looks yummy! and glad to hear that Sangria was great enough to order a large! But though perhaps not cheap and cheerful enough for a student night out?

    thanks for the post

  2. hmmmm maybe not cheap enough for a student no! but there are plenty of smaller things that you can get that arent that expensive - things like tacos and tostadas are $5-6, though in saying that, they are really small, so you'd find better value somewhere else I think, if you're looking for student cheap! Drinks are reasonably priced though I found - but the sangria wasnt strong, after 500ml of it, I wasnt esp tipsy or anything!