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Casa Enrique

5-48 49th Ave. (Vernon Blvd.) Send to Phone
347-448-6040
Chiapas-style Mexican café in Long Island City.

Cuisine
Open
Dinner nightly, Brunch Sat.-Sun.
Features

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Casa Enrique, Long Island City, NY

Casa Enrique Restaurant Review

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About the restaurant & décor: Southern Mexico cuisine stars at this no-pretense Mexican café in Long Island City. Chef Cosme Aguilar, longtime chef at Café Henri (“Henry” in French) in Greenwich Village, has created an homage to his home and his family favorites from Chiapas with his Casa Enrique (“Henry” in Spanish). The room is long with an urban sleekness, set with a stainless steel bar, a wooden communal table and a few two-tops. But it’s the welcoming and fun vibe that adds color and warmth along with a crowd that knows a good thing.

Likes: You’ll feel like one of chef’s family here at this friendly, less expensive version of higher-end Mexican.
Dislikes: Long waits can be expected as the restaurant is always packed.

Food & Drinks: The menu is divided into five sections: Pal Arranque (appetizers), Antojitos (cravings), Pa Rematar (entrées), Del Puerto (seafood) and Taqueria. Both the bright ensalada de betabel con jícama and the fried oysters with chili mayo are what addictions are made of. Many Mexican restaurants can claim they know how to do mole but deliver a gloppy overly chocolaty mess that drowns the protein beneath. In contrast, Casa Enrique serves up a well-balanced and flavorful mole de Piaxtla, tender chicken coated with a mole of whipped almonds, raisins, plantains, sesame seeds and chocolate. Other dishes are equally hearty and regionally authentic, like the chamorro de borrego al huaxamole, lamb shank braised in chili pulla, huajes and epazote. A wine list with more than 30 bottle options and nine by the glass, unusual at a Mexican café, revolves around mostly Italian, Spanish and French vintages, while featuring at least one that’s Mexican. Of course, sangría, tequila and mezcal are popular beverages as well. Finish the meal with a spongy tres leches cake, topped with sweet cream and goat-milk caramel.
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