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By Elena Kadvany

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About this blog: I am a perpetually hungry twenty-something journalist, born and raised in Menlo Park and currently working at the Palo Alto Weekly as education and youth staff writer. I graduated from USC with a major in Spanish and a minor in jo...  (More)

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Mex To Go closes in Menlo; replaced by Mama Coco

Uploaded: Jul 16, 2014
Longtime El Camino Real Mexican spot Mex To Go has closed and in its place, a new Mexican eatery called Mama Coco Cocina Mexicana opened its doors.

Mama Coco is a family-owned restaurant opened July 9 by longtime Menlo Park residents Omar Piņa and Monica Pilotzi. They named the restaurant after Pilotzi's grandmother, whose recipes inform much of the food. Read this Almanac article for more detail on the family's story.

Mama Coco serves up a good range of food, from staples like tacos ($10 for four), ceviche ($9-$10), tostadas ($10-$14), quesadillas ($11-$14) and burritos ($8-$11) to more intriguing sounding entrees like salmon veracruzano (pan-roasted salmon with red rice, chayote, carrots, green beans and Veracruz salsa; $15) and cochinita pibil (achiote-marinated suckling pig, slow cooked in banana leaves and served with banana-coconut rice and mango salad). And the owners know their audience – there's even a take on kale salad, made with red cabbage, avocado, carrots, mango, red peppers and snow peas dressed with a tamari-ginger vinaigrette ($10).

Enjoy any of the food in an outdoor patio in the back of the restaurant, which has been upgraded under the new ownership, with a glass of wine, beer, margarita or sangria. White wines span from an Argentinian torrontes to an Italian prosecco to two Napa Valley pour; reds include a tempranillo from Spain's La Rioja region, a Josh Cellars cabernet sauvignon and Meiomi pinot noir. All are available by glass ($8-$12) and bottle ($32-$48). Beers include bottles of Corona, Pacifico and Negra Modelo, all $4 a pop.

Margaritas are $7 and sangria, $8.

View the lunch menu here (the only menu that's been posted on the restaurant's Facebook).

Cheers to what sounds like one of the more interesting restaurants to descend on Menlo Park in a long time. Has anyone been yet? Feel free to share your experience here!

Mama Coco Cocina Mexicana
1081 El Camino Real, Menlo Park
650-272-6634
facebook.com/mamacoco

Hours: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

Comments

 +  Like this comment
Posted by Jeff Rensch, a resident of Barron Park,
on Jul 17, 2014 at 10:32 am

Omar was a wonderful employee at Reposado and Gravity plus working for the bakery at the Saturday Farmer's Market. He is a great hardworking guy. Please do give this restaurant a try!


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Sarah, a resident of Cuesta Park,
on Jul 20, 2014 at 12:39 am

This place is awesome! Went here last night with the kiddos and grandparents. Great family spot. Food and drink were tasty and ambience is fresh and alive! We will put it in the rotation. Did not kill the pocket book either!



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