Grazing: Searching for flavor at the Prickly Pear Taqueria

It was Sunday night at the Prickly Pear Taqueria (950 W. Peachtree St., 404-881-8887) in Midtown Plaza. The restaurant, which opened in June, was packed and there’s little doubt that its 100-plus varieties of tequila had a lot to do with turning out a crowd.

We were sitting at a small table outside. Our server seemed pretty frazzled by the crowd but when I ordered my entrée, chicken mole, he grew suddenly focused and took a step closer. “Don’t order that,” he said.

“Why not?” I asked.

“It’s not authentic. The chicken is not cooked in the mole. They just pour the mole over roasted chicken,” he said.

I thanked him for the heads up. Needless to say, the warning did little to calm my suspicions that I was about to eat the usual neo-Tex-Mex-Southwestern food whose flavors depend on downing a couple of large margaritas. I worried more when the server suggested I order one of the wood-fired “Southwestern pizzas.” I followed his advice, choosing the pollo al carbon — one featuring grilled chicken.

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(Photo by James Camp)

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