07 January, 2007

Mi Corazon

462 Lygon St, Brunswick East; 03 9384 6153

New Year, new restaurant. Mi Corazon opened on New Year’s Eve at the very northern end of Lygon St. It specialises in a range of tequilas and cocktails, as well as offering a selection of snacks and meals, cooked in traditional South American style. The venue has been completely renovated from its former incarnation as Cafe Banter. The front area is expansive, with seating options at tables, cushioned benches, or bar stools. A small, semi-shaded outdoor courtyard is accessed through a cosmic blue brick-lined walkway at the back. The makeover has been tastefully done - the stone floor brings to mind walking into a cool Mexican cantina from the heat of siesta time. The walls are warm oranges and reds, and the Mexican touches - piƱata, saintly statues - are not kitsch.

The drinks menu is extensive, with eight types of tequila, priced from $7.50-$16 a shot. There's no draught beer, but the fridge features several appropriate imports, including Sol, San Miguel and Dos Equis, most priced around $7.50. Bottles of local beer are priced from $5.50. The bar list also includes a range of cocktails, and the eager bar staff are happy to talk about selections.
A simple food menu offers snacks and mains. We had a beef taco, served as a soft folded tortilla, fried and filled with minced beef and potatoes ($12). The dish came with a generous green salad with salty dressing and a hot peppery dip. The menu reads as standard South American fare - quesadillas, enchiladas, nachos (served as a plate of corn chips with bowls of guac, sour cream and salsa), with snacks ranging in price from $8-$12 and meal options of fajitas or enchiladas for $16. However care is put into the food to make sure it's flavour and spice that stand out, rather than oil dominating, as is often the case with Mexican food.

Mi Corazon is a new addition to the Brunswick section of Lygon Street that enhances the range of quality, international culinary destinations on offer.