I love Mexican food and I really enjoy trying different types of mole. The Destination Oaxaca menu at Richard Sandoval’s El Centro DF showcases mole, and it includes two of my favorite Mexican dishes: guacamole and tacos.
Richard Sandoval (of Masa 14, Zengo, and Toro Toro) and his corporate chefs travel to new destinations twice a year to research the culinary heritage of a region and they bring back the story and the experience of that region to his restaurants.
Guacamole is a must to start a Mexican meal for me. The one at El Centro is made table side and customized to your liking. The Georgetown location of El Centro is close to where I work, and I love going there on Fridays after work to enjoy some guacamole and a margarita or mojito.
Other appetizers featured in the Oaxaca menu include an amazing shrimp ceviche in a delicious citrus habanero broth–it’s light and only slightly spicy with chunks of guacamole on top, and the crispy potatoes and chorizo that were fantastic.
The menu features two gems from Oaxaca: mezcal and mole. The mezcal is is an ingredient in both featured cocktails, and in two of the featured main dishes. All three main dishes feature mole. The smoked pork tenderloin is served with a pumpkin mole poblano, the braised short ribs are served with a mezcal mole, and the shrimp tamal is sprinkled with dehydrated mole. The shrimp tamal was one of my favorite dishes. The masa is made of creamy sweet corn, topped with garlicky grilled shrimp, and sprinkled with cotija cheese. The charred pork belly tacos with pipian sauce and pickled vegetables were also outstanding.
Check out photos of these dishes below.
El Centro DF is a great spot for happy hour, and perfect to enjoy a comforting meal that will satisfy your Mexican food craving.
El Centro DF has two locations:
El Centro DF 14th Street: 1819 14th St. NW, Washington, DC 20009
El Centro DF Georgetown: 1218 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC 20007
Disclosure: I was invited to sample the new Destination Oaxaca menu at El Centro DF. I was not compensated for writing this post. All opinions are my own.