Monday, August 20, 2012

Tony's Birthday at La Condesa

His baby face means that he still occasionally gets carded to buy alcohol, yet Tony actually celebrated his 39th birthday this past weekend. My parents were visiting and were kind enough to watch Jackson and Olivia so I could take the birthday boy out for a fancy dinner.

Tony chose La Condesa, a "modern Mexican" restaurant in downtown Austin. We arrived a little early for our reservation, so we hung out at the bar. I ordered a mojito. It was full of tangled mint leaves, and it was nice and strong!

While we waited, I admired the restaurant's design. Very hip and stylish. The light fixture above our heads caught my eye.

We were soon seated, and started off our meal with a salsa sampler.

Tony had a pork chop for his entree, which he enjoyed immensely. He also had a side of Mexican street corn, sprinkled with chili powder and dry, crumbly cotija cheese.

I'm sorry for the increasingly poor quality of these pics. I was using my phone's camera and I didn't want to use a flash, so they are pretty dark. But this was such an awesome meal, I felt like it was still worth posting about.

I had the chili relleno stuffed with quinoa and butternut squash, swimming in a hot tomato broth. It was so good. The quinoa soaked up the yummy tomato sauce, and the poblano pepper was so tender it was practically falling apart.

For my side, I ordered the grilled green beans with epazote. They were nicely charred and very addictive.

We ordered more drinks as we ate. I tried a caipirinha, which came with blackberries, blueberries, and strawberries floating in it. Like the mojito, it was strong and tasty.

The dessert menu was so crazy, we had to order something. We decided on the remolacha con coco -- a beet juice-colored cake served with chocolate mousse, coconut sorbet, hazelnuts, and pickled beets. Believe it or not, the salty-sour flavor of the beets was perfectly offset by the smokiness of the hazelnuts and the sweetness of everything else. It was perfect! I even relented and used the flash.

The next day was Tony's actual birthday, and I made him some birthday enchiladas. I used this recipe but subbed sweet potato greens for the kale. They were so good! It was a big production -- blanching the greens, making the cashew cheese, making the enchilada sauce -- but the end result was well worth it.

The birthday boy was pleased!


  1. Happy birthday to Tony! You are right he does have a baby face :) Sounds like a great meal at the restaurant, nice cocktails too! Your drink with the berries sounds amazing!

    Nice job with the enchiladas, they sound amazing! I'm totally doing Mexican food for my birthday too this year, with a big ol' margarita to wash it down ;)

  2. Aw, happy birthday to Tony! What a delicious meal! I love the quinoa chili rellano! it looks amazing - -as does your own enchilada meal! yum!

  3. Happy birthday Tony! It looks like he had a great day. I might be putting those enchiladas on our "to make" list. They sound fantastic!

    Oh, and I'll be 39 in March & get carded a lot yet when I buy beer for Mike. It's kind of nice! :)