A Multitude of Magnificent Mexican Meals Awaits!
The essence of Mexico awaits you as you arrive at this charming authentic Mexican restaurant. You will be greeted with a warm welcome from one of Don Juan’s friendly staff members.
As you take in your surroundings, you will see soothing earth tone colored walls adorned with eclectic artwork. The cozy dining area, equipped with a fully stocked, quaint bar, is subtly lit and features music befitting the “South of the border” journey that your taste buds are about to take.
Upon seating, we were swiftly served Tortilla Chips with a Salsa duo (above). The mild salsa was subtle yet flavorful while the spicy salsa offered your palate a kick.
Our knowledgeable and friendly server, Alex (above left), recommended we try some of their delectable libations to start. First was the Red Sangria (above right, left), which was full of refreshing, fruity flavors. Following this was the White Sangria (above right, right), which was slightly fruitier, with a strong but sweet citrus blend and a mildly bitter finish. We also sampled a traditional Margarita presented in an oversized martini glass with a salted rim (above right, center).
The vibrantly colored, flavorful Guacamole (below left) was served in an adjoined dish, along side Tortilla Chips. Without having to ask our server, though he did confirm our notion, we realized that this rich, creamy, appetizer could only be achieved in-house with fresher-than-fresh ingredients.
The Aguacates Relleno (above right) was our next appetizer to be sampled. This skillfully crafted cylinder of avocado was filled with a creamy sauce and crowned with a grilled-to-perfection shrimp. The lettuce and red garnishments provided a crunchy contrast to the smooth sauce and avocado. Overall, this dish was pleasing to both palate and pupils.
As we continued on our avocado adventure, we were given the Grilled Shrimp and Lime Avocado Salad (below left). Do not neglect the warm dressing on the side; the flavor is outrageous and has a delicate lime finish. The avocados were equally astounding as their predecessors, and the mixed greens were fresh, but what really shone were the tender shrimp, full of smoked BBQ flavor. Be sure to share this refreshing salad with your tablemates.
Our first entrée was the Margarita Chicken (above right), one of their various Margarita Dishes that are all cleverly served on a plate with a salted rim. This juicy, tender chicken was served on top of pico de gallo and red cabbage. The soft flour tortillas made for a nice vehicle for the ingredients, but it also works fine on its own.
Alex delivered our next dish with a side of trivia. The Maria Special (below left) is a traditional dish, named after the restaurant’s owner, and is a favorite amongst staff and patrons alike. With its offering of grilled strips of Black Angus skirt steak, Spanish rice, black beans and avocado, all beautifully presented, it is no wonder that this dish is so popular. The bright colors and amazing scent tantalized the senses, with a taste that lived up to the presentation. As per Alex’s advice, we used a touch of salt to bring out the flavor of the avocado. This is an abundant dish, so come hungry or ready to share.
We finished our entrees with the Paella (above right), a classic Spanish medley. Topped with a half of a lobster and chock full of shrimp, scallops, mussels, chicken, chorizo and their own special ingredients, there is something in this dish for everyone to enjoy. The chicken was tender, the chorizo was savory, and the seafood was fresh and expertly cooked, with the succulent lobster being the star of the show. This entrée presented a nice marriage of flavors with exceptional rice.
All good things must come to an end, this meal included. To finish, we shared two desserts from their selection of home-made delicacies. The Flan (above left) skewed slightly from its traditional brethren, in a very good way. Sweet, rich, thick, and delicious, this colossal custard takes nearly two days to make. You might find yourself having to share this filling dessert with a friend. The Deep Fried Ice Cream (above right) was our decadent departing delight. With its cold, creamy core of vanilla and its warm, wafer-like shell, topped with whipped cream and drizzled with honey and chocolate, this dessert will surely be a table-pleaser.
A pleasure all around, from the friendly staff to the delicious desserts, Don Juan is a Mexican restaurant that you don’t want to miss. Rest assured, when you leave your table, you will be doing so with your stomach full and your taste buds thankful.
Overall Rating: Exceptional
Cuisine: Authentic Mexican
Ambiance & Décor: Warm & Inviting
Prices: $13 - $33
Website: Don Juan