A friend and I enjoyed a Sunday afternoon meal recently at Azteca Mexican Restaurant in Erwin.
I’ve been frequenting this Erwin eatery for several years, and I’ve found that it is quite consistent in delivering tasty Tex-Mex meals at affordable prices.
The restaurant’s interior offers a casual dining environment with seating available at both tables and comfortable high-backed booths. The table surfaces are midnight blue vinyl with dark wood framing. The dining area features beige walls and arches, plastered and sponge-painted to resemble adobe. The light fixtures descending from the ceiling are entwined with artificial greenery and each lamp is illuminated with a red, blue or green light bulb. Two wall-mounted television sets are also located in different parts of the restaurant. Framed paintings depicting Aztec scenes, and an embossed metal relief of an Aztec scene complete the decor of the restaurant.
After being escorted to our table, our server provided us with menus and delivered a complimentary bowl of tortilla chips and a dish of salsa. The mild salsa, a thin blend of chiles, tomatoes and spices, tasted great with the chips as we scanned the menu options.
For those interested in other appetizers, the Azteca menu also offers a variety of nacho platters, as well as dips, including Guacamole Dip, Cheese and Bean Dip and regular Bean Dip.
My dining partner and I took time to study the menu, which offers several combination dinners as well as Especiales de la Casa, or House Specials. Shrimp, poultry, beef and pork all featured on the menu’s selection of entrees.
I considered such entrees as the Azteca Salad, Burrito Deluxe, Quesadilla Grande, and Carne Asada before I decided to order the Shrimp Chimichanga.
My dining companion selected the Texas Fajitas after the Steak Ranchero, Grilled Shrimp Burrito, Yolandas and Pollo Picoso.
After a brief wait, our food arrived hot, and looked and smelled quite appealing.
My Shrimp Chimichanga consisted of a flour tortilla stuffed with ample plump, grilled shrimp, bell peppers and onions and then deep-fried and topped with a white cheese sauce. This entree is accompanied by a side of refried beans, guacamole salad and sour cream.
My friend liked the Texas Fajitas, which consisted of a medley of chicken, shrimp and strips of steak, all sauteed and tossed with tomatoes, onions and bell peppers. This meal is accompanied by refried beans, Mexican rice and three flour tortillas. The one minor flaw with the dish involved our agreement that the steak and chicken could have been given a little more seasoning during the cooking process.
Although these were very filling meals, we saved some room to order a shared dessert. The sweet options on the menu include a Banana Burrito, Flan and Fried Ice Cream.
My friend and I chose to share the Flan, a traditional Mexican custard in a caramel sauce. This treat tasted light and quite refreshing and, shared by the two of us, didn’t leave us feeling like we’d overindulged at the end of a heavy meal.
Through the years, I’ve found Azteca Mexican Restaurant quite consistent in food quality as well as for attentive and friendly service. In addition to the regular dinner menu, Azteca offers a selection of vegetarian options, as well as a menu for children and a lunch-only menu of express favorites. The next time you have a craving for a Mexican meal, consider paying a visit to this Erwin eatery. If you do go, let them know they came with a recommendation.
AT A GLANCE: Azteca Mexican Restaurant, 1238 N. Main Ave., Erwin. 735-0600. Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; Saturday-Sunday, 11:30 a.m.-9 p.m. Entrees range from $5.50-$13.99. Credit cards accepted. Carryout available. Assortment of beers available.