Broken English – Mexico City Pub Bites In Chi-Town
By Natalie Hilvert
On E. Lake St., pinned between N. Garland Ct. and N. Michigan Ave., shines a fluorescent sign that reads “TACO PUB”. Upon entry, guests are immersed in a whirlwind of vibrant colors, bright lights, and eclectic design. Seasoned restaurateurs Phil Stefani and Adolfo Garcia bring the excitement of Mexico City to Chicago with their new restaurant, Broken English. With inventive drinks and quality bites, Broken English is a spot you don’t want to pass up.
On a Monday night, I had the opportunity to visit Broken English for a special tequila night! I ventured away from the classic Margarita and chose a specialty cocktail to accompany my tasty bites: The Rattlesnake Piñata. This vibrantly pink drink consisted of Herradura Tequila Blanco, prickly pear puree, maraschino liqueur, yellow chartreuse, and lime, and was finished with “sweet-hot salt” and a cute gummy worm. The Piñata had an interesting combination of taste sensations, it was sweet, sour, and spicy all at the same time.
For nibbles, we started out with an assortment of chips to sample a variety of flavorful salsas as well as assorted pickled vegetables. The Lime-flavored Guacamole was a standout. My weakness, freshly mashed avocados, was topped with pickled onions and served with crispy tostada chips. We were full before we even got to the tacos!
Two different kinds of Pork Tacos were presented to us on a massive decorative platter. The Carnitas Taco, complete with salsa verde and cilantro, had great flavor. The juicy, delicious, and perfectly spicy Pork Belly Al Pastor Taco brought the taste-bud satisfaction I was looking for. The spot-on contrast between the grilled pineapple and pork restored any lost faith in the taco scene.
We finished our meal with a treat from a pop-up stand by Yumm Pops. Yumm Pops is a Chicago-based company providing delicious popsicles from all organic, locally-sourced ingredients. The Blackberry Hibiscus Popsicle was refreshing and naturally sweet without added sugars. I generally am not a popsicle lover, but the incredible freshness of real fruit made me rethink my chocolate obsession. Other flavors included Horchata and Ginger Lime.
I will 100% be returning to Broken English for the vibe alone. The funky and fun atmosphere is the perfect start to a night out or a way to wind down after a long day at work. I hope to make it back soon so I can try more of their unique cocktails and yummy tacos.
Stop in to grab an afternoon taco or a late night bite. Be sure to grab one of the awesome drinks as well. Broken English is open daily from 11AM to 1AM and is a great option for some cheap $5 Margaritas and $3 Beers!