I had a chance to stop in at a really unique and authentic Mexican restaurant recently located just outside the Heights. I got to tell you that I was floored by their food. Mangondas features family recipes that Cesar and Darwin Valenzuela offer in an array of choices. They immigrated here with their extended family from Central Mexico and relocated to the states. They’ve been open in this location for about a year and a half and have established a thriving restaurant.
First let me say that I their botanas (elaborate nachos to us gringos), tacos and enchiladas are made with locally sourced and seasonal ingredients. I got a tip from a friend to ask for the Quesa Birria, which BTW is not on the menu (hint hint, ask the chef) This meal didn’t fail in completely surprising me! Basically, it’s a taco that’s akin to a French Dip sandwich. Beef braised overnight with plenty of cheese and wrapped in a fried corn tortilla cam accompanied by a bowl of beef consume’. The accompanying sauces could light a fire of various degrees if you are looking to kick it up a notch!
Upon finishing a complete meal and the soup… and the remaining fresh tortillas… Cesar availed two servings of Mangondas. This is a dessert which is the name sake of the restaurant. It is a frozen delight consisting of mango sorbet topped with some type of tamarind syrup, apples and a somewhat piquant spice on top. They added a tamarind candy straw as a flourish. I can only compare this to a fruit form of a Sweet Tart. It was totally amazing.
This was an unexpected and thoroughly entertaining lunch, which set us back under $30 for two of us! I would strongly suggest making the 2-3 minute drive out of the Heights to check this place out! They also use GrubHub.com, DoorDash.com and Seamless.com
Mangondas Mexican Kitchen
Address: 6823 N Habana Ave, Tampa, FL 33614You visited on Thursday