Tonight Taberna Mexicana is due to open in Beverly Hills. Inspired by some restaurant in Houston named Ninfa’s that we know nothing about (but keep being told by press releases that we should), Taberna is a Scottsdale import that puts Honduran-born chef Alex Padilla at the helm for the kind of dressed-up versions of regional Mexican that you’ve run into at places like Frida, Sandia, Rosa Mexicano, and Red O, with varying success. Taberna Mex. actually sounds great on paper already, with a creative ceviche selection, those types of salads that come heavy with jicama, and eighteen dollar tacos (we’ll say it again, eighteen dollar tacos!) that are kind of exciting when you consider duck chicharones, bacon-wrapped shrimp, and mole-rubbed filet mignon make the cut. What else sounds potentially edible?
Roasted rabbit enchiladas and an ancho pepper gravy brisket give us more hope than the eighteen-dollar chile rellenos and a seafood fideo erroneously called “Mexican pasta” (it’s Spanish). Who knows? We’re dubious of any high-priced Mexican not made by John Sedlar, but this one bears some promise. See the menu and food porn yourself, then let us know your predictions for Taberna.
Oh, but before you fire without bias, you must understand that while they don’t claim to be bringing “authentic Mexican food to L.A.,” they do call themselves “the best Mexican in L.A. since L.A. was in Mexico,” with an image of Califas to boot. Ha ha, remember, that’s coming from Arizona!
Taberna Mexicana, 369 Bedford Ave. Beverly Hills. 310-858-7070.