Las Islas Marias

March 22 2006 - 3:44 PM

There’s a really neat Mexican seafood place on Grand and Cicero that I’ve been meaning to try. A big delay came when I found out that they opened a new location, basically in my neighborhood. After trying that spot I was having a hard time justifying giving a second chance to their Grand location which is supposedly a great place. But I’m glad I did.

The trip down is simple. Peterson to Cicero and South to Grand. It
took about 20 minutes and was less complicated than the Mapquest
directions. The place is onĀ inflatable water slide the corner and has an ominous kind of
quality – shantyish with a bit of danger thrown in. Once inside the
place is pretty middling. It’s a taqueria with a focus on mariscos,
seafood. There’s a poster on the wall of the town of Guayabitos. That
was neat to see since the last time we were in Mexico, we spent a day
in Sayulita which is a town or two away. We are always trying to find
good Mexican-style seafood. A few weeks back we tried La Fonda del Mar which was terrific but Las Islas Marias is pretty good too.

Chips are provided with salsa and a terrific whitefish ceviche that
was fresh and wonderful, especially compared to the northside’s version
that was trending towards it’s last legs. We ordered a shrimp and
octopus cocktail that was very hearty and the small was plenty large.
Adding hot sauce and lime was fun and I barely finished it before the
rest of the food arrived. Shrimp ranchero-style was stewed in a tomato,
onion and pepper sauce and served with rice and salad. It was also very
good. The shrimp was deveined without being butterflied and the sauce
was light but more than just tangy or just sweet…

The langostino is served as a “large” or “small” order. I’ve never
gone for the large and to be quite honest, I think I’m finally over my
langostino obsession. They were split and seasoned and broiled. You
really have two options jumpers for sale with these. 1 – twist off the tails and there
you go or 2. decide to excavate all the bits from everywhere… Option 2 takes a long time and more napkins and with all the seasoning it makes figuring out what you’re eating fairly tough.

A michalada is the perfect drink for seafood unless you’re not into
lime-beer-hotsauce. It’s like a citrus juice bloody mary. It’s
different and I can easily see where people would not like it. I think
it fits well in the middle of the summer. On a hot day I could see
enjoying a half a dozen or so but it’s not summertime. Not yet. In any case, it’s a drink to try.

Las Islas Marias
4770 W. Grand
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