La Vida Cantina celebrates 1st anniversary in Costa Mesa, California

On July 19, 2015, La Vida Cantina celebrated its first anniversary at The Triangle in Costa Mesa. Chef Marco Martinez designed a menu of fresh, high quality ingredients where traditional Mexican recipes are prepared with a modern twist. They have an outdoor bar under palapas with exterior seating along with interior seating with a dark lounge feel.

Hawaiian Margarita ($12) is a blend of Don Julio Silver, St. Germaine liqueur, agave nectar, Hawaiian li hing mui seasoning, fresh pineapple, jalapenos, lime juice, and rimmed with house blend of spices. I grew up eating li ming mui crackseed so I was very intrigued by this drink. It is a very creative idea, but the li hing mui flavor is far too intense. The tequila is apparent but in the background. Less li hing mui powder or bumping up the pineapple juice to balance out the salty sourness of the li hing mui powder would be better. Rating: 3/5

Molé con Pollo ($15.25) is grilled chicken breast topped with molé sauce, sesame seeds, red onions, and served with Mexican rice and refried beans. The chicken was tender but a little dry. The mole sauce was very thin and didn’t have the dark chocolatey color you normally see in molé. The background spices need to be more robust. Rating: 3.5/5

Carne Asada ($24.75) is seasoned marinated grilled 10 oz. certified Angus skirt steak topped with Rico’s Queso, guajillo chili flakes, and served with refried beans, guacamole, salsa quemada, and your choice of corn or flour tortillas. The skirt steak was grilled to a perfect medium rare and very juicy. The beans were thick with cheese melted and gooey on top. The guacamole was creamy and buttery. Rating: 4.5/5

Churros ($5.75) are homemade and served with a caramel dipping sauce. The churros had a crispy exterior and custardy interior. The caramel sauce would be better if it was a little thicker so it would stick to the churro better after dipping. Rating: 3.5/5

If you’re in the Costa Mesa area and have a craving for Mexican cuisine in a comfortable setting, head on over to The Triangle and give La Vida Cantina a try!

Atmosphere: 4 out of 5 stars
Service: 4 out of 5 stars
Décor: 4 out of 5 stars
Food: 4 out of 5 stars

For more information:
1870 Harbor Blvd
Costa Mesa, CA 92627, United States
Hours: Monday and Wednesday from 3pm to 10pm; Tuesday from 3pm to 11pm; Thursday from 3pm to 2am; Friday from 11am to 2am; Saturday from 9am to 2am; Sunday from 9am to 10pm
Parking: Garage – Self and Valet parking available
Happy Hour: Monday through Friday from 4pm to 6:30pm;
Late Night Happy Hour: Thursday through Saturday from 11pm to 2am
Brunch: Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 2pm

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