South Beach’s famed Ocean Drive is known for its trendy, street-side bars and eateries filled with fashionable locals, curious tourists, people-watchers and mainland Miamians looking for a relaxed night out. Adding to this list of decades-old haunts, Jalapeño Mexican Kitchen – which opened just this Fall – is now the beachfront boulevard’s only authentic Mexican restaurant. Taking guests on a mouthwatering fiesta through the cantinas and street-side markets of Mexico’s most traditional areas, this laid-back locale is quickly becoming known for its smooth, signature margaritas, festive décor, impeccable ocean views, and of course, a collection of hometown favorites made with only the freshest local ingredients.
Created by Alejandro Maya – of the Maya Group, which also opened Lincoln Road’s Maya Tapas & Grill – Jalapeño Mexican Kitchen has a delicious menu created by the talented Chef Miguel Faget that you simply can’t resist. Sit down at your colorful tabletop or plush, vibrant lounge, ask the waitress for one of the restaurant’s Jalapeño Margaritas, and get the fiesta started with its spicy combination of jalapeño-infused tequila, passion fruit juice, fresh squeezed lime juice, cilantro leaves and house-made sour mix.
Before you order your second, let your taste buds be your guide and try signature appetizers like Cochinitas Al Achiote Tacos – achiote-seasoned chorizo, pulled pork, smoked bacon, cotija cheese, fresh lime and pico de gallo – or my personal favorite, Table-Side Guacamole: a savory blend of fresh avocado, spices, pico de gallo, cilantro and lime. For the main event, pick the Burrito Mar y Tierra – skirt steak, Spanish chorizo, chicken, shrimp, shredded lettuce and roasted garlic tequila salsa verde wrapped in a flour tortilla, sided by refried beans and Mexican rice – and you’ll be shouting ¡Olé! in no time.
Despite these tasty favorites, what really separates Jalapeño Mexican Kitchen from the South Beach pack is both its authenticity and its appeal to local Miami residents. Designed to engage both strolling tourists and the South Beach community, this Mexican must-try offers unbeatable daily specials, including: $1 tacos every Tuesday (7 p.m. to Midnight), $19.95 bottomless Mexican Paella (every Friday and Saturday), “In The Biz” $5 lunch burritos, and a daily Happy Hour with drinks for just $5.95 (available from open until close). Additionally, locals who visit Jalapeño Mexican Kitchen get a special discount off their entire bill every time they come in.
Jalapeño Mexican Kitchen celebrated it’s grand opening on December 11th, 2014 with a ribbon cutting ceremony by the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce, a live DJ and not surprisingly, a Mariachi band. The restaurant is located at 530 Ocean Drive.