Top row from Takote Chill N’ Go: Tacos Pastor, Chorizo, Steak and Nopales with Cheese and Flautas. Bottom row from Ayotli Mexican Restaurant: Flautas and Mexican Tacos. Photos by Stevette Ballog.
By: Stevette Ballog
Finally, poll results that I am excited to hear about – and this time they could be actually right for once. I’m a sucker for all types of Latin cuisine, so no matter who won the poll for the Best Mexican Food in Coral Springs, I knew I‘d be a happy camper heading out to sample some food.
I go nuts for “mom & pop” establishments because they remind me of home. I am not into the mainstream “Americanized” Mexican food that has flooded so many of our neighborhoods. In the Coral Springs area, we are fortunate when it comes to authentic variations of this grub. Whether you’re looking for enchiladas, spicy moles, damn good tacos or some perfectly charred carne asada, your next great Mexican meal isn’t far from home. I couldn’t wait to see who won your vote for the best Mexican food around town. The top restaurants our readers chose: Takote Chill N’ Go and Ayotli Mexican Restaurant are both family owned and operated and both put out a fantastic spread of authentic, flavorful and fresh Mexican cuisine, so I wasn’t too surprised seeing them take the lead in the poll.
Unfortunately, we didn’t realize that Takote Chill N’ Go isn’t exactly in Coral Springs – it wasn’t until after the poll was nearly over that my editor realized that the restaurant was geographically located in Margate, however, still very close to Coral Springs. Anyway, they’ll be considered in this review!
Ayotli Mexican Restaurant
Ayotli Mexican Restaurant, located in the Turtle Run Shoppes Plaza, is a bi-weekly landmark for me. I have been to this place over twenty times, and can honestly say that I have never had a bad meal or subpar service there. Whether I choose the tacos al carbon, rich slow roasted pork osso buco, cheesy enchiladas and burritos, a gigantic bowl of tortilla soup or the loaded sizzling skillet fajitas – Ayotli aims to please.
The moment you walk through the door, a delicious aroma of home-style food smacks you in the face. Owner Nubia Urbine’s menu pays homage to her Mexican roots offering a large selection of staples and a few specialties that you may not be familiar with. If you’re in the mood for something different, order the popular Molcajete. Grilled steak, chicken and pork adobada get served swimming in a bubbling hot Mexican red sauce filled to the rim of a giant molcajete (Mexican version of a mortar and pestle) and topped with charred scallions, peppers, pico de gallo and cheese. The presentation itself makes ordering it a shoe-in and once you take a bite, you too will be hooked.
Offering lunch and dinner seven days a week, Ayotli Mexican Restaurant hits the spot every time.
Takote Chill N’ Go
Tucked in the back of the Carolina Springs Plaza, Takote Chill N’ Go is another favorite of our readers. What is it about this place that we love so much? Could it be the thick handmade tortillas, freshly baked torta bread, spicy salsas or their rich and complex mole? Sure, but the one thing that really takes the cake here for me is their pork tacos. After one bite of their roasted pork I was left feeling like owners, Lourdes and Amado Yamasaki were the King and Queen of Al Pastor.
Pineapple and chili marinated pork gets loaded on to a spit and slow roasts until crisp yet meltingly soft in the middle. It’s sliced off in strips and nestled in a corn tortilla then topped with chopped onions, roasted pineapple, cilantro and a fresh squeeze of lime juice. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. Of course, there’s other stuff to savor here. The steak, chicken, spicy chorizo and delicious nopales and cheese tacos are all fantastic, but the pastor is the crowning achievement in this place.
Takote Chill N’ Go offers lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday and breakfast and lunch on Sundays so if you’ve got a hankering for some huevos rancheros, chilaquiles con huevo or sopesitos mananersos – get there early.
Other notable mentions are the Flautitas De Pollo – four rolled and fried tacos loaded with shredded chicken breast topped with lettuce, onion, tomato, sour cream, cheese and fresh avocado or the Enmoladas – four fresh tortillas stuffed with chicken breast and covered with a luscious mole sauce, sour cream, cheese and onions. Whatever you do, don’t head home without trying a taco or three.
Many Choices in Coral Springs
At the end of the day, I liked a lot of the places that were listed in the poll. If I had my way, I would order some tacos al pastor from Takote Chill N’ Go, some carne asada, molcajete, or anything seafood from Ayotli, grab a few tamales from La Union Bakery and some pickled onions and jalapeños and verde salsa from Zona Fresca. I would stop at El Mariachi for a margarita while waiting to pick up my food and sign up for a gym membership online when I finished it all at home.
Like I said earlier, we are fortunate to have great options in the area. The great thing about the “Best Of” competitions is learning about new places and trying something different. If you haven’t tried Ayotli Mexican Restaurant or Takote Chill N’ Go yet, please do. Be sure to let them know that Stevette from Fork Notes and Coral Springs Talk sent you and let us know what you think!
Takote Chill N’ Go
8038 W Sample Rd
Coral Springs, Florida
Tue – Thu 11:00 – 9:00
Fri – Sat 11:00 – 10:00
Sun 10:00 – 5:00
Ayotli Mexican Restaurant
6291 W Sample Road
Coral Springs, FL
Sun – Wed 11:00 – 9:00
Thu – Sat 11:00 – 10:00
Stevette Balllog, formally from Chicago has been living in Broward County for 15 years. She has a B.S. in Culinary Management from the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale and is owner of the Fork Notes Blog. She loves to travel all over the US in search of the best food, wine and craft beer, and she loves to cook. If you have an idea for a restaurant for her to review, please contact her at email@example.com follow her on Twitter at @Forknotes