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La Comida Starts Serving the Mexican Family Meal Today

The neon pink monkey at La Comida
The neon pink monkey at La Comida

[Photos: Chelsea McManus]

La Comida
Address: 106 S. Sixth St.
Phone: 702-463-9900
Status: Opens today

After three days of friends and family events, Michael and Jenna Morton's La Comida makes its big debut in Downtown Las Vegas today. The restaurant, named for the meal shared by staff before service begins, features fare inspired by Mexico City.

La Comida's executive chef Pablo Sanchez-Ortiz hails from Mexico City and Sahuayo Michoacán, Mexico, where his grandmother taught him how to cook at age seven. He plans to use a molcajete to grind spices for his mole, mixiotes made from a half bone-in chicken and a blend of spices baked in banana leaves. His authentic fare has been sought after by high rollers at Wynn Las Vegas and Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.

Look for appetizers such as a Tostada Mixta served with shrimp, scallop, snapper and yellow aji dressing; classic Pozole prepared with hominy, pork, avocado and shredded cabbage; and Mexican street corn flavored with cotija cheese, cayenne pepper, butter and mayonnaise. Regional specialties include Carne de Res a la Parrilla served with beef skirt steak, wild mushroom and oven roasted poblano peppers; Pollo al Horno created with mixiote chicken, Mexican squash and achiote sauce; and Puerco Ahumado prepared with mesquite smoked pork shoulder, adovada sauce and plantain chips.

Over on the bar side, margaritas and tequilas take center stage. Cocktail get a dose of fresh fruit purees made from guava, prickly pear, passion fruit, pomegranate, tamarind, mint leaves, lime, basil and tajin spice. Look for a tequila list that is bigger than the number of seats in the place.

The 25-foot bar overlooking Sixth Street features a zinc top bar next to a Dutch door. The building itself is the former laundry facility for El Cortez. A seven-foot sculptured metal monkey clings to the rooftop corner, and by night, that monkey turns neon pink with bones.

The entrance sits in the back alley, where graffiti peeks out from behind ornate metal window grates. The 3,000-square-foot restaurant seats 80 in the dining room, 15 at the bar and 24 on the patio. Inside find wood floors, reclaimed tiles from Mexico, authentic church pews and stained glass from old church windows. The hostess stand is made from an antique cart. Above the open kitchen find an ofrenda filled with Dia de los Muertos iconography and off-beat milagros.

Expect La Comida to be open Monday through Friday for lunch, Tuesday through Sunday for dinner, and for brunch on Sunday.
· All Coverage of La Comida [~ELV~]