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Chow Down In Milwaukee

Restaurant Reviews

It Takes A Family To Run A Village

Today’s review features another great new addition to the vast choice of Mexican restaurants available in the city. Only a few blocks

From our house, Mexican Village Restaurant has taken over the spot 3161 s. 92nd street. On the corner of 92nd and Beloit. This spot had previously housed the Asian restaurant Wing Ho. I was only to Wing Ho once. It was an odd spot that was clearly on its way down. Through the years, even the sign outside had become cracked and was fixed with duct tape. Truly not a sign of a place on the rise.

Imagine, if you will, the excitement Margie and I had when we saw the sign for Mexican Village Restaurant arrive. Margie especially. Given the option, I believe my lovely lady could eat Mexican food several days a week. Our anticipation being so high it seemed an eternity until the new place was open. After a night of DJing, followed by an early morning working at the Post Office, having someone else cook lunch seemed like a good idea. We decided to see if the new place had opened.

As we pulled up to the building, we were gleeful to see “Now Open” on the window. We parked and got out. With our first inhale in the parking lot you could smell the delicious aromas of authentic Mexican cooking. All this before we even got inside. As we entered the establishment, there were some simple, yet cozy decorations featuring a mirror, flowers and a vase. The alluring scent of mouth-watering food only got stronger with each step.

When we were inside a young man with a beaming smile came bounding across the floor with a friendly greeting and a sincere feeling of excitement at having us there. I later learned this man was the owner. His passion for serving his customers was evident from the moment we walked in the door. Another wonderful lady door over and began leading us to a table. Mexican Village is roomier than the outside would have you believe. As we made our way to the table, she explained they had a buffet that ran until 3pm. Margie’s eyes lit up light a young child on Christmas morning. There was little doubt that we would be having the buffet. As it was our first time there, it would give us a chance to sample many of the things they had to offer.

The buffet was really two small buffets. Once featuring lots of hot dishes to choose from. The second being a cold buffet with sauces, condiments and desserts. We grabbed our plates at the hot buffet and at a first glance I wanted to put one of everything on my plate. I actually said out loud, “This is a buffet. You can come back.” To clear up any confusion I felt the need to explain to Margie, who was next to me at the buffet, that I was merely reminding myself to be patient. Lost in her own world of sensory overload, she merely nodded her understanding.

The buffet might not have been as large as some, but it included everything you needed to satisfy your south-of-the-border cravings. I started with warm flour tortillas filled with a chicken fajita mix. I added rice and beans to that and somehow managed to fit a pork enchilada with verde sauce on my plate for the first trip. When we returned to the table, we were brought a basket of chips and salsa in two squeeze bottles, one hot and one mild. I must confess when it comes to chips and salsa, I prefer dipping, but I can see how the squeeze bottles would be good for adding to the meal on your plate.

As we were enjoying our first few bites the charming gentleman who greeted us stopped by to learn our opinions on what we had tried so far. If there is one thing to be said about Mexican Village, it is that you are never want for attention. Our glasses of water were never less than half full, our plates were always removed as soon as they were empty, and there was always someone making sure everything was up to our standards. We discovered in conversation the gentleman who greeted us and now was checking on our satisfaction was the owner. The lady who had shown us to our table was his mother, and the gentleman in the kitchen was his grandfather. The family had been involved in the restaurant business for several years. His grandfather had owned several places on the south side of Milwaukee and the family also owned a restaurant on the north side of Milwaukee as well. As for him personally, he had recently owned a used car lot and been bought out. He used that money to open Mexican Village. His grandfather who said he was too old to run a place of his own, agreed to lend his expertise to the kitchen. Mexican Village Restaurant is an independent, family run affair and it really shows. Even though it was a buffet at a restaurant, you felt as if you were invited into their house for dinner.

We tried several other items from the buffet included mini chimichangas, build your own tacos and tostadas, and the barbacoa. The latter was my personal favorite. It has a very good spice with an even better flavor. Margie informed me she was pondering moving in. Myself, I am just looking forward to returning for another trip to the buffet. The family atmosphere, the great tasting quality food, and the convenient parking will earn a return visit from both of us. Everyone we mentioned the buffet to seemed generally excited as well.

If there were any suggestions I could offer this fabulous place it would be to add a little of that home cooking to the dessert offerings as well. Another interesting observation was the bathroom. It appeared to be not only a little rustic, but had a mirror positioned to allow you to observe yourself while conducting your business. Although this allows for some unique selfie opportunities you could share with the love of your life who is still sitting at the table… hypothetically, I would suggest an update to the restrooms at some point would be a good idea.

If you find yourself in the vicinity of The Mexican Village Restaurant, you owe it to yourself to stop in. You’ll not only enjoy the family feeling, but at $10 for the buffet you can indulge all your Mexican cuisine desires in one stop. Can’t make it for the buffet? Mexican Village offers plenty of meals and combinations for your sit-down pleasure as well. No matter which option you choose, the Mexican Village Restaurant will be sure to please.

 

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