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Friday, January 25, 2008

Yucatan Grill - Review #1

Date of Visit: January 5, 2008
Yucatan Grill
550 Pacific Coast Hwy
Seal Beach, CA 90740
(562) 430-4422

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Appetizer: Chips and Salsa and Yucatan Pepita Dip
Appetizer #2: Jamaican Jerk Chicken Wings
Entree: Yucatan Shrimp Skewers
Dessert: Deep-fried Ice Cream

Yucatan Grill - Sign

I've mentioned a couple times before that there was a handful of Mexican restaurants I'd visited in 2005 that inspired me to start this blog. Yucatan Grill was one of them but ironically it has taken me over two years since starting the blog to get back there for review purposes (here's the Register article that tipped me off to the place).

Yucatan Grill - Shopping Center

Yucatan Grill's address indicates that it is on PCH but really it is in the back part of a big one-building shopping center that itself is behind a McDonalds that faces PCH, so when you see the view shown in the photo above you still have to go to the back of this building to get to Yucatan Grill.

Yucatan Grill - Exterior

Yucatan Grill - Indoor Patio

Now the Yucatan Grill has mostly what we think of as "traditional Mexican" food with a few items on their menu that have a Carribean influence, such as the Jamaican Jerk Chicken Wings. These are advertised on the menu as being very hot. When my friend and I ordered them we found out they weren't that spicy hot . . . until we dipped them in the accompanying sauce and then we were both breathing fire. These wings have even been featured in the Register before.

Yucatan Grill - Jamaican Jerk Chicken Wings

Like the chicken wings another appetizer that was on special during the happy hour was the Yucatecan Pepita Dip:

Yucatan Grill - Yucatan Pepita Dip

This dip, which is based around roasted pumpkin seeds, struck me as Mexican version of hummus. It was good and good for dipping chips in but, being a little on the pasty side, it helped to also dip the chips into a little salsa (which itself was a great combination of refreshing and robust and chunky). It was also very rich and even though it looks they only gave us a small amount it was still hard to eat the whole thing up. In fact, we didn't finish it but not because we didn't like it.

Yucatan Grill - Parrots

My entree was the Yucatan Shrimp Skewers served with beans, Mexican rice (cooked with peas and carrots and I believe some mustard powder), and a little salad:

Yucatan Grill - Yucatan Shrimp Skewers

With a tasty, subtly flavored glaze and firm textured shrimp roasted to perfection I could see these winning over even non-shrimp fans.

Chris P., the carnitas fiend, stayed true to his roots by ordering the carnitas burrito and loved it, but, once again, all burritos look pretty much the same from the outside:

Yucatan Grill - Carnitas Burrito

Chris went for the tres leches:

Yucatan Grill - Tres Leches Cake

While I went for the deep-fried ice cream, which might now be up in my top three of deep-fried ice creams (gets points for no nuts in the crust and using chocolate chip ice cream):

Yucatan Grill - Deep-fried Ice Cream

As usual, we couldn't sample all the food, not even the Yucatecan staple of cochinita pibil (offered only on Saturday nights). That's what makes this blog so fun. It's a never-ending culinary adventure with new horizons to explore ever presenting themselves.

Yucatan Grill earns a 4.25 Speedy Gonzales rating:

Speedy Gonzales Speedy Gonzales Speedy Gonzales Speedy Gonzales Speedy Gonzales

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Chubbypanda said...

So that's one of the restaurants that started it all. Nice!

ChristianZ said...

Yep, one of the originals. I still need to go back and get better pictures.