Today on the Bite Tonight: Monterrey Cantina
Located on Main St. in Downtown Royal Oak is Monterrey Cantina. Opened in 1992, Monterrey Cantina prides themselves in serving authentic Mexican cuisine. See how they ranked.
Atmosphere: 3 out of 5 bites
Price: 2 out of 5 bites
Quality/Taste: 2 out of 5 bites
Service: 3 out of 5 bites
Wow Factor: 0 out of 5 bites
Chili Con Queso: Jalapeno peppers and a blend of melted cheeses. First, the chips seemed very much like store bought, although I could be wrong. Second, the dip came out right after we ordered it which also leads me to believe that it was also store bought. It looked and tasted like it came out of a jar in the grocery aisle. It had some heat, and was just OK. I don’t think it was worth $9 for the small amount we got. The salsa tasted fresh and was very good.
Cheese and Onion Enchilada: Rolled in a corn tortilla and topped with Mexican sauce, cheese, and sour cream. We ordered this a la carte and apparently it lacks sour cream when you order a single enchilada. It also cost $4 for what tasted like a corn tortilla saturated in cheese. This also came out immediately after we ordered it and it wasn’t even warm in the middle. We politely informed our server who was very professional and sent it back to get reheated. Unfortunately, reheating it, didn’t make it taste better. The Mexican sauce was OK and tasted like an ordinary red sauce, but after ordering this I am glad we didn’t opt for a whole dinner.
Fajita Salad: Charbroiled chicken breast on top of fresh greens, sauteed peppers and onions, sour cream, and Mexican cheese mix. Served in a crispy flour tortilla shell. The chicken was juicy, but lacked flavor. There were only a few julienned peppers and onions (cut into long thin strips) which I didn’t like because it they were not bite sized. The “fresh greens” were huge chunks of romaine lettuce. I really prefer that a salad comes in bite sized pieces. When I cut up the ingredients, I had difficulty because the salad was inside the tortilla shell. For $11.99, this salad was not worth it and hardly had any toppings other than the chicken.
Although our servers did a good job and the food was served quickly, it lacked quality. We arrived @ 6 pm on a Saturday and there were only a handful of tables in the dining room. I don’t mind waiting for my food to arrive if it means a little more love will be added. Sometimes I think that mediocre restaurants get away with overcharging for their dishes because of the location. If you’re looking for good Mexican food in Royal Oak, opt for Cantina Diablos down the street. Their prices are better and the food is fresher and made in house.