Golden Spoons Review: Casa 43

| 29/06/2016 | 17 Comments

CNS Business(CNS Foodie): Nestled in a quaint little spot behind the Copper Falls building, Casa 43 offers authentic Mexican cuisine with flares of the island intertwined.  The concept is pretty simple: tiny restaurant with reasonably priced, locally sourced products and the freshest margarita you can find on Grand Cayman. Maybe it’s the lime zest that puts their ‘ritas over the top of other places, but whatever it is, it’s working and I suggest you try them.

The bar area is raised above the dining room, creating a separate entity, with a few high top tables, comfy bar stools with backs on them and they have roughly eight bar stools at the actual bar.  The bartenders are super-attentive and friendly and their cocktail list is diverse, with margaritas ($9.95), Pisco Sour, Michelada ($6.95, basically a beer mixed in a spicy blend of seasoning in a tomato juice base).

Whether you come for happy hour and appetizers, lunch or dinner, you will find a wide variety of items to satisfy most palates and their kids menu is one of the best I’ve seen on island.  Not only do they offer the “safe” chicken tenders and fries ($7.95) or the basic quesadilla ($6.95), they have more “mature” dishes for the little ones in your life, like the grilled mahi with veggies ($8.95), steak and fries ($10.95) or the Casa 43 fried shrimp and chips ($10.95). It’s no wonder the place was packed with families before we left!

We tried the Chicharon with Chips ($5.95), which was absolutely gigantic, and the guacamole trio ($13.95), which came with a generous portion of classic guacamole, roasted corn and cheese, as well as a  jalapeno-infused guacamole, all delicious and too much for two people who wanted to try more on the menu. The locally caught tuna ceviche was delightful — light and tart with a mixture of lime and sesame oil. It seemed like a small portion but, chip after chip, it kept going and going and we were not disappointed ($12.50).

As we sat at the bar, a plate of sizzling fajitas crossed our path … smelling divine. How could we resist? We opted for the half chicken half beef, which is served with sautéed onions and peppers, spicy cheddar jack cheese, guacamole, sour cream, salsa and warm flour tortillas on the side. Although it was cooked perfectly and the flavors were balanced, there was a lot more veggies than protein.

We still had plenty to take home for a leftover meal, but we did notice they were a lot more generous with the onions and peppers. Nonetheless, a great deal for $19.99. The shrimp taco ($6.50) and portobello taco ($5.00) had great flavor and distribution. The only criticism would be their homemade corn tortillas were too spongy and fell apart easily. Usually, corn tortillas, if made properly, are dense but Casa 43’s version is a lot lighter and airy.

Casa 43 is an easy-going, fun place to get away from your every day BS. You will leave full, possibly tipsy, and still have money to burn the next day. The service was spot on and the vibe of everyone in the room seemed on the same plane — smiles all around.

Casa 43 website

Readers’ rating for Casa 43:

Category: Golden Spoons Review, Good Food. Bad Food.

Comments (17)

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  1. Just Driftwood says:

    We had a pretty mediocre meal here and rated it accordingly (3 star review on Trip Advisor, so not exactly scathing). The owner, who “encourages” feedback, responded by telling us all of the reasons we were wrong in our opinions and about our experience, and how everyone else loves their Flavas. Ok…go to it. We won’t be back, and we don’t recommend it to anyone else.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Bland food. Small portions.

    Better to go to Carlos and Martins or Agave or the other restaurants that have tapas nights. Even sunshine grill has very delicious “Mexican” dishes.

  3. annoymous says:

    My one and only time at Casa 43 was a disappointment. The food was cold abd the tacos were stale. Overpriced. not going back

  4. Max - Owner says:

    Max – Owner – – the review by CNS is wholly UNSOLICITED by us. We support our staff’s progress and futures and Mich was an amazing part of our restaurant, a role which he GREW into and was carefully overseen in regards taste profiles and cocktail balances by myself and Lloyd who are doing the same now with our adjusted team. As with any team members departure there is always change ESPECIALLY in the bar and food service industry and each hand pours slightly differently HOWEVER, Graziela is a true mixologist, and as we did with Mich we will once again, and have at this point I believe, prefect our signature FLAVAS and allow this mixologist to create, as we did Mich, her personal brand CLOSELY aligned to Casa 43’s brand and taste profiles.

    In a very busy restaurant, leaders and their team members will get a little heated at times as they strive to provide outstanding service and in a small space this is sometimes on display, and I am overwhelmed and grateful at the number of positive reactions our guests and friends have to the service levels and attentiveness.

    If you have specific comments and areas of improvement please email us directly at the address above. We always welcome constructive, not vindictive, feedback so that we can seek to constantly improve.

    Thank you.

    • Anonymous says:

      Surely it is not very professional to display staff squabbles to paying customers. I have experienced that at Casa 43 a number of times and it does not make me particularly comfortable. I will take your offer to comment directly.

    • Anonymous says:

      I guess everyone has different experiences and I’m sure it depends on when you go but I have been to Casa 43 at least 5 times now and I’ve never had any issue with service. The first time I went, which was shortly after they opened, I was a bit dissapointed with the food, it tasted a bit bland. But we gave it another try after and since then the food has been delicious every time. I’m not a huge fan of the chicken taco as I feel that lacks a bit of flavour, but it is chicken, so go for something a bit more adventurous :).

    • Anonymous says:

      Always appreciated when an owner encourages feedback, that’s awesome! I will agree w/ Max in Graziela’s abilities as a bartender, she’s amazing and when she was working alongside Simon Crompton at Agua you never had a bad drink!! So glad she’s back on island!! Cheers Graz!

  5. Anonymous says:

    The food here is nothing great. it is ok, definitely nothing special. The portions are small and not worth the money. The place is small and feels cramped. The drinks, eh, they are ok. I have been once and will not return. There is nothing particularly inviting for me to return.

    BTW I LOVE Mexican food. The food is not Mexican. It may be Spanish from Spain, but this is not Mexican food.

    • Anonymous says:

      Learn more negative descriptive words. That way your repetitiveness can be more interesting.
      (We get it. You do not like it. It was packed last night so others evidently do. I enjoyed mine!).

      • Anonymous says:

        The comment was polite and to the point. If it was more descriptive it would be rude and perceived as vindictive.

        Other restaurants have better food. This place should advertise itself as having Spanish flair and not as authentic Mexican. Or better the reviewer should not have stated the place offers authentic Mexican cuisine.

        • Anonymous says:

          There web-site clearly states that they specialize in regional mexican food. So unless you have been to every region of Mexico I think it would be hard for you to say it is not authentic. It might not be the most popular authentic food but it could well be authentic in some regions.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I ate here once and have not had any interest in going back. The place was crowded, we had to wait at the bar for a table, and the tacos were pretty terrible. Agave Grill is much better.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Sounds like an advert for Casa 43 and not a very objective review. Whilst I find the food good, the portions are actually very small and the staff less than attentive at times. I have even seen the staff snipe at each other (including the manager) when I have sat at the bar. With regards to drinks, these have gone downhill since Mitch left and are not as well crafted. Perhaps CNS should find someone a little more objective here.

    CNS: There is no connection between the reviewer and Casa 43. As with all our reviews, the reviewer was entirely free to write about their experience at the restaurant, good or bad.

    • Anonymous says:

      why does the review not seem objective if it’s a positive one? Can’t someone simply enjoy themselves… maybe the staff were having a great day and the review was lucky enough to be there that day! I’m sure they would comment if something they had was bad, and tacos aren’t supposed to be huge portions anyway!

  8. Anonymous says:

    I think Casa 43 is in the same building as CopperFalls not behind it :). I do really like their food though. I’m not a huge fan of fajitas in general but I did try them there once due to the smell and agree that the veggie to beef ratio was too high for me. Their tacos are great, I can’t comment on the corn tortillas as I always order with flour tortillas because I don’t like corn tortillas. The pescado taco, rock shrimp taco, carne asada and the beef barbacoa are my favourites.

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