Chiapas Mexican Grill
We need to be honest about a few things, people of Joburg. Your stomachs are expanding at an alarming rate and your desire for new food adventures are getting completely out of control. It’s no longer good enough to head on down to your local Spur and take your pick from the menu; now the variety of niche options trumps all. There is an international food renaissance in Jozi and there’s nothing anyone can do to stop it.
One of those international niche markets that I’ve seen popping up just about everywhere is Mexican. From tacos to burritos, with all the hot chili and guacamole in between, there’s no stopping the fiesta. A new place I discovered this weekend is Chiapas in Rosebank. Located in the Zone, Chiapas is wedged between the clothing stores just outside the newly renovated section on your way to the movies. It’s a small restaurant with a few tables to sit at, but appears to be mainly for takeaways. The décor is unfussy and unpretentious with an expansive serving area for quick food made on the go, in front of you.
Chiapas offers a variety of options from steak and pulled beef to chicken and vegetarian. I went for the fillet taco, which was prepared right before my eyes. You select whatever you want added – cream cheese, guacamole, chilies – as your three crunchy tacos are filled in a speedy production line that belts you out quicker than the time you spent waiting. It doesn’t hurt that it tastes great as well. I must admit that I’m not too adventurous and had a tough time getting the hang of eating this foreign object, but that’s just me. Full of flavour and no holding back on the fillings, it was a very satisfying meal for a reasonable price.
It differs from other restaurants boasting international flavours in the music playing while you sit and eat. It’s not that irritating Mexican salsa music that a lot of places use to sound more “authentic”. I even heard “Karma Police”, probably the first time I’ve heard the song when I wasn’t alone in the dark, crying myself to sleep. Surreal but awesome. The only thing that needs to be authentic is the food, and with relaxed colours and an open plan interior Chiapas makes for a great sit down and chill moment away from the hectic mall.
The only criticism I could field is that it’s in the Zone and there are no free tequilas and Coronas. I really hate malls and only ever go if I need to go to the bank ’cause I have an irrational reluctance to Internet bank or buy new clothes – I normally just steal those from other unsuspecting people. The experience as a whole actually transported me from the doldrums and brightened my day. After you’re done with the generous portions you’ll definitely need to siesta, and yes, I went there. So a new Mexican place in Rosebank! If you’ve gone to The Zone and haven’t been to Chiapas, then what on earth are you doing there?
Where? The Zone @ Rosebank
Contact? 084 708 0008
Operating Hours? Mon – Sun 8:30am to 8:30pmby Daniel McCaughtry