Although my favorite Mexican food to eat here is from my grandmother’s kitchen; there are a few restaurants my friends and I enjoy eating at. A few of my girlfriends and I have made Margarita Wednesdays a tradition in the summer time at La Casa. My brother, sister and I go to Los Cabos at least once a month in West Des Moines, which is an amazing delicious Mexican restaurant. I also like Monterrey in Altoona because it’s so close to my house, but no restaurant can compare to Tiki Tok in Mexico.
My best friend and I were feeling spontaneous so we took a week off work and went on a cruise. We both found it difficult to eat on the ship because we were continually getting sea sick. I’ll never forget the fishy, chewy, and crunchy taste of the little shrimp and cocktail sauce going down my throat, or the unpleasant feeling I had when it was coming up.
The only bad memory of my trip was praying that my legs would stop shaking and that my journey would hopefully reach an end so I could stand on solid ground. Other than being sea sick for the first day; I had a blast on the cruise!
I got the opportunity to see many things and visit quite a few places. One of the ports of call was Cozumel, Mexico, and my friend Alexandra and I decided we wanted to try some real Mexican food. Of course, we were a little concerned about getting sick, but I’m glad to say that didn’t happen. We asked on the ship where the best place for Mexican food was, but they said that anywhere along the main shopping strip would be good. We then found a place called the Tiki Tok. The place was on the second level of a building.
We sat out on the little balcony that they had. They had covered it with sand. The view from the restaurant was amazing. I was hypnotized by the vibrant colors and the employees’ of the restaurants equally vibrant lifestyles. I remember feeling jealous of the workers because they would get to go back to Tiki Tok tomorrow and the day after that, but I wouldn’t. The walls were an explosion of colorful textiles and every color of paint one could think of that was as bold as can be. Vases were on every table with burnt orange and deep yellow dried peppers inside.
The chairs at the dining tables were made of a Mexican Serape material. The colors, the fringe, and the feel of it gave the restaurant even a stronger Mexican energy. My favorite part of the restaurants decor was the little cactus lights that strung amongst all the walls connecting each bulb to the wrought iron chandelier in the middle of the room. When one first enters the restaurant the Mariachi band is one of the most noticeable features. Three men were dressed in black with button up shirts and decorative sombreros all standing in the corner of the room.
Two men had violins and the third was handling a guitar. As we took our seats the band started playing lively music and a few older couples got up and danced fearlessly. Everything in the restaurant was bold excluding my bashful personality; otherwise I would have danced too. I was in a trance watching the people dance with one another until the Mariachi band shouted in sync, “AY! ” causing me to be brought back to the present. It was then that I had realized how hungry I was. The menu prices were in pesos, so it looked like everything was really expensive, but it wasn’t.
We ordered the hot and spicy red enchiladas which were about 60 pesos, and they also brought us chips and salsa. The chips were a little bit thicker than you would get here in the US, and there were three different types of salsas. There was a regular pico de gallo, then there was one made with tomatillos, and the last was a pineapple cilantro salsa that was actually really tasteful. Lexi and I have never had pineapple cilantro salsa before, so we weren’t sure whether it was going to be appetizing or not. After stuffing myself with chips our food finally arrived.
It was just about the yummiest thing I’ve ever had. The red sauce for the enchiladas was a little bit different than what I’ve had here, but I can’t tell you how. It was more delicious over there though. There was chicken inside the enchiladas and a touch of sour cream on top. We took the extra salsa we hadn’t demolished with the chips and smothered our enchiladas with it. I ate every last bite of it and was so full afterwards! The amazing food I had in Mexico was the best Mexican food I have ever had. I remember the smell of the ocean and sweet salsa at the same time.
The bright colored sombreros and the ocean front view was an amazing sight to see while enjoying the food as well. Anytime I think about Mexico I think about the short beach chairs, sand between my toes, all the smells of the restaurant, laughing with my best friend and delicious enchiladas. This will be a memory that would be difficult to forget because we took so many pictures of the restaurant and it was the best eating experience I’ve had yet. I’m really glad that my friend and I were able to have this dining experience together. Alexandra and I enjoyed it very much!