Just because it ain’t Tuesday, doesn’t mean you can’t get some tasty tacos.
“They’re great for sharing, they’re casual. You can order one, you can order 100.”
Because at Bodega Canal, they serve hundreds by the tray, every single day.
Located on Canal Street near Boston’s TD Garden, Bodega Canal is a sexy new spot serving elevated Mexican fare- a departure from many of the restaurants in the neighborhood, according to Director of Operations Justin Power.
“If you’re familiar with Canal Street, there’s lots of sports bars everywhere. When you come to us, you see these bright pink doors that already kind of tips you off that you’re entering some place a little bit different. You come in through the pink doors and it kind of opens to this big, rustic, glamorous Mexican restaurant where the music’s a little bit louder, the vibes are better and immediately you’re transported to some place different. The flavors are big, the space is big, the ceilings are high. We’ve got these beautiful chandeliers hanging with these really rustic walls, and the food is kind of like that. It’s street food, it’s food you eat with your hands, but it’s elevated. The food reflects the space, and vice versa.”
And the space itself has everything you want, no matter if you’re out for a night or on the town, or looking for something more intimate.
“We have our main dining room, which has an upper and a lower level and then connected by a narrow hallway, we open up to a lounge. There’s couch seating, coffee tables, so really it’s sort of kind of casual. People will usually post up on a couch and hang out for a long time.”
To kick off your meal, a margarita is a must have- and nothing will get your tastebuds primed like the Cucumber Jalapeno Margarita.
“The cucumber jalapeno margarita has a great balance of a little bit of spice and a little bit of coolness. You get the heat from the jalapeno, but the cucumber gives a little bit of crunch and coolness to the margarita.”
And the perfect food to pair with your tequila based beverage, is definitely the Tequila Wings.
“We drop them in the deep fryer, so they come up super crispy, crunchy, and they’re dressed with a tequila sauce. It’s a little bit of tequila, agave, chile, lime. Everything you get in a margarita. It’s sweet, salty, a little sour. They’re about as Mexican as you’re gonna get with a chicken wing.”
Other mouthwatering Mexican apps include the light but tasty Tuna Tartare Tostada and Mexican Street Corn served on a stick.
“So here we do it simply and straightforward, just as they would in Mexico. It’s cotija cheese and ancho crema so it’s a little cool, a little spicy, and the cheese just gives it that little bit of saltiness to go along with the sweet crunchiness of the corn.”
And for something to share, there’s the ultra cheesey queso fundido.
“It’s cheesy, it’s hot, it’s gooey, it’s melted. It’s the ultimate way to start your meal, you know? There’s not a single person in here that doesn’t love our queso fundido.”
While you’re at Bodega Canal, you’ve got to try a few tacos. Served on a tin tray, these handheld treats start with fresh tortillas grilled to order and topped with all of the good stuff.
“Here, we want to do straightforward tacos, but with elevated ingredients. They’re a home run.”
There’s the classic Al Pastor with salsa roja, salsa verde and chopped onion or the perfectly cooked skirt steak taco.
“Everybody loves a steak taco. We use skirt steak. It’s cooked medium, sliced very thin so it still maintains that tenderness. And it’s garnished with a chili garlic oil, queso fresco, and salted onions so you get really good balance and a little bit of everything on that taco.”
Seafood lovers can lay their lips on the Octopus taco with aji amarillo and plenty of cilantro. Or try the satisfying Shrimp.
“Shrimp and avocado are a classic pairing. We marinate our shrimp in lime juice. It comes simply with a salsa roja and avocado, so you get that creaminess of the avocado, a little bit of the heat from the salsa roja, and the shrimp are juicy, plump, delicious. Everybody loves it.”
And if you don’t eat meat at all, they’ve got you covered with their Cauliflower taco.
“So the cauliflower is deep fried, which gives it this nice crunch, and it almost gives it like a meatiness, that texture. So we serve it simply with refried black beans, pickled onions, and radish. While vegetarians love it, people who eat meat think it’s just as good as any one of our other tacos.”
Other offerings at Bodega Canal include do it yourself fajitas- served with warm tortillas, sauteed peppers, sliced steak, sour cream and guac. Or the over the top Bodega Burger.
“Our burger comes seared on the plancha with chihuahua cheese melted on top. It comes with a salsa roja, some refried black beans, and some avocado, so it gives it all those Mexican elements with just a good solid burger in between. If you like burgers, you’re gonna love this one.”
And you’re going to really love dessert, especially if you order Bodega’s simple but satisfying churros.
“Everywhere you go in Mexico, you can get churros from the street carts and we figured we’d keep it simple with these delicious churros that are deep fried, they’re crispy, they’re soft on the inside with a little bit of sugar and cinnamon.”
So if you’re craving some south of the border flavor, head to Boston’s West End and hit Bodega Canal.