El Coyote [4/5]
4 (80%) 1 vote

El Coyote
In search of a low key lunch, the hubby and I landed at El Coyote. Located on Old Madison Pike, just east of Bridge St, it was a perfect place to stop in for some pre-shopping fuel.

We arrived not long after they opened, some of the only Huntsvillians to decide to have Mexican food for Memorial Day. A flat screen TV played soundlessly on one end of the room while a Spanish radio station provided the soundtrack–a seamless blend of Spanish and English chatter and music. The restaurant itself was full of saturated colors–yellow walls, blue ceilings and seating that was red, orange, green, and purple.

We were seated promptly and while we reviewed the menus a basket of chips was delivered to our table.

El Coyote
The chips came with a small bottle of salsa and two dipping dishes, a brilliant and easy solution to the double dipping problem. The chips, thin and crunchy with a strong corn flavor, were served hot. The salsa was mostly pureed tomatoes, saucy and mild. The tomatoes used were flavorful, but the spice was so subtle as to be nearly absent.

After some deliberation, we placed our orders–beef Tacos Mexicanos for me and a chicken Burrito Real for the hubby. Our food came up quickly, neatly plated.

I have an abiding love for flautas and the Tacos Mexicanos (shown at the top of this post) were essentially tiny flautas made with corn tortillas. The deep fried shells were crispy with the same deep corn flavor as the chips. The beef was shredded and cooked with green bell peppers and tomatoes. All-together the “tacos” were flavorful with a nice textural balance between crunchy and chewy.

Along with the main dish, my plate came with beans, rice, guacamole, sour cream, pico de gallo, and lettuce. The lettuce (shredded iceburg) and sour cream were exactly what you would expect. The house prepared sides were fresh and flavorful. The beans were creamy and smooth with a robust “bean-iness” that handily surpassed the blandness of many homemade refried beans. The short grained rice was cooked with an oil that added a sheen and a rich dose of flavor. Bits of tomato and onion added to the color and the taste. The guacamole was made with fresh avocado, tomato, onion, and a hint of cilantro. Not only was the avocado good (a hard thing to find in Huntsville) but the overall dish was light and delicious. The pico de gallo captured the same light, bright essence with fresh tomatoes, crunchy onion and minced cilantro.

The hubby’s enjoyed his Burrito Real, commenting especially on the quality of the chicken.

El Coyote
El Coyote offers inexpensive, low key, quality Mexican food. The ingredients are fresh, the dishes well put together and the prices reasonable. This is not a place for those who believe in major heat; our dishes and the salsa were mild, however they were still flavorful. For nice weather, they sport a covered outdoor patio which would be a great spot to relax with one of their “margicornonas”, a Corona upended into a margarita.

Total for the meal: $17.47 (Includes two soft drinks and two lunch items)

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