4211 S. Lamar Blvd., Ste. #A2
Austin, TX 78704
When Sergio and Eric Varela first made their way to Austin from their native Mexico more than twenty years ago, owning a restaurant like Azul Tequila on Ben White was a distant dream. But they paid their proverbial dues and armed with some killer recipes handed down from their mother’s “fonda” in Tejupilco, they launched Azul Tequila almost a decade ago.
The food is a combination of interior, coastal, and of course Tex Mex cuisine. To start, try the Sopes, two beautiful corn tortillas, topped with beans and chicken. The chorizo is a nice touch and the avocado sauce sparkles. Then you have to try the Cameron Tequilero. Fresh shrimp mixed with an elixir of cocktail sauce, onions, jalapenos, cilantro, avocados, and much more. Fantastic flavor rush here! The Mole de Olla is a rocking beef and vegetable soup mixed with fried tomatillo sauce. Great idea and wonderful execution of this bold soup.
The entrees featuring Mexican interior cuisine are some of the best in the city. The Pescado al Mojo de Ajo features a filet of sole done in a riveting sauce (mojo) of fresh lime juice and garlic. This is delicious but you might want to pass if you’re on a first date (unless you both have it). I love the Carnitas de Puerco. The pork is marinated in oranges and spices and sautéed in the jus created from the marinade. Exceptional flavor in tbis dish.
And new on the menu is the Cabrito al Maguey. Goat is difficult to get right but Azul has the formula. This south central dish uses a marinade of chile guajillo and is slow cooked on manguey leaves. The result: tender meat with wonderfully subtle flavors. And my long time favorite is the Chile Relleno in Crema. The poblano pepper is stuffed with sautéed pork, almonds and raisins and is elevated even further with a stunning tomato cream sauce.
On the Tex Mex side, the traditional Chile con Queso is a notch above most. Smooth with just the right density, it clings to each chip ensuring the ultimate mix of flavors. I also enjoy the Enchiladas Tejanas, two cheese enchiladas topped wither either chicken or beef. I like the chicken. The Carne Guisada features the usual beef tips in a sauce of rich, creamy gravy. I was never much of a guisada fan but Azul changed my mind. And finally the El Paso ribeye is a no brainer. There’s nothing here but mountain s of flavor on a steak topped with onions, bell peppers, jalapenos and tomatoes and covered with a rich Monterey Jack cheese.
The margaritas at Azul have their own reputation. Azul means “blue” and the Blue Margarita and the Blue Mexican Martini go down very easily. Trust me on this.
Azul Tequila is open daily for lunch and dinner and for breakfast on the weekends. This is a family joint but with elaborate sensibilities. Mucho bueno!