OTR’s Maize bridges a Latin US food space having a fusion menu that is creative

OTR’s Maize bridges a Latin US food space having a fusion menu that is creative

The eatery honors old-fashioned recipes from across Latin America, having an emphasis on Venezuelan food

The outside of Maize Picture: Hailey Bollinger

Maize, an innovative new Over-the-Rhine eatery which started at the beginning of July, focuses on an unique fusion menu that honors old-fashioned dishes from across Latin America, having an emphasis on Venezuelan cuisine.

“It’s difficult to get genuine meals which actually originated in (Latin America) and generally are being served the way in which it is supposed to be and honored the way in which it must be, ” says Maize co-owner Louisa Reckman. She’s experienced the restaurant company for over 14 years, of late due to the fact owner of Queen City Radio. “I don’t think you can find many restaurants that accomplish that in Cincinnati, and I also believe that was lacking — specially Venezuelan and Puerto Rican (offerings).

Fellow co-owner Angel Batista is an indigenous of Puerto Rico and, in the first foray in to the restaurant company, is adamant about keeping tradition. He spent my youth surrounded by various cooking impacts, including fare that is venezuelan. (Puerto Rico is due north of Venezuela, divided by the Caribbean Sea. )

“We do this by actually maintaining these dishes, the authenticity that is actual down simply by using a base of tradition, ” he says. “The plating and means we’re bringing items to the dining table, all things are extremely old-fashioned, maybe not prepared. ”

The restaurant took its title from maize, a corn flour dating back to some 10,000 years and very very first used by indigenous Mexicans. The flour functions as the cornerstone for the arepas, cachapas and empanadas served at Maize, and even, Batista discusses the material while the kick off point when it comes to restaurant’s whole concept. He calls it Maize’s “delivery system, ” acting being an access point for the rich world of Latin American food. Reina pepiada arepa Picture: Hailey Bollinger

To that particular end, the menu is colorful and diverse, with meals from throughout the area that complement the other person while keeping their old-fashioned origins. Batista rattles from the geographically-assorted origins of these meals whilst the ceviche that is peruvian Mexican street corn and Venezuelan cachapas and asado negro.

“There’s plenty of work that went into this notion, ” he says. “How do we bridge what to make someone when it comes to time that is first things comfortable, and exactly how do we additionally keep consitently the old-fashioned aspect that after a Peruvian walks in, they feel just like we did justice with their meals and their traditions? ”

In addition to sticking with tried-and-true meals (“From the beans to your pork towards the chicken to your chicharrones, plenty of that material is right from my mom, ” Batista claims), Maize makes use of top-quality components. They source their meat from Eckerlin in Findlay marketplace and their produce arises from Lasita Joe & Sons, Inc. On Fourth Street. Maize’s professional cook, Curtis McGlone, brings their own understanding too, after stints during the Italian-Argentinian Alfio’s Buon Cibo and Southern Hotel that is contemporary Covington.

We stopped by for a Tuesday evening with an 8 p.m. Booking, that we at very first idea ended up being just a formality, however when We stepped in the restaurant that is buzzing Race and 14th roads, I happened to be happy We had called ahead.

The bright blue accents associated with restaurant lend latinamerican cupid to your tropical vibe, since do the large number of rum choices regarding the beverage menu. With an increase of than 30 rums in home, Batista and Reckman think the nature would be the next bourbon with regards to popularity and w The Tembleque cocktail — an homage to a normal Puerto Rican pudding dessert. Picture: Hailey Bollinger

We ordered the Tembleque cocktail to start out, an homage up to a conventional puerto rican pudding dessert. Bacardi black colored rum, Don Q, coconut milk, vanilla, egg, cinnamon and bitters create a completely sweet sipping cocktail that reminded me personally of eggnog, within the easiest way feasible.

For appetizers, my pal ordered the ceviche ($9) and, on our server’s recommendation, we attempted the guasacaca gruesa ($8), that is a chunky Venezuelan avocado plunge, just like guacamole, but ready with olive brine for ac Ceviche and mariquitas, or plantain chips picture: Hailey Bollinger

We munched on airy yuca fries ($4), too — yuca is a potato-like tuber, with increased inherent taste much less shame.

Allow me, fleetingly, to exalt the ceviche: it absolutely was perfect. Crisp, bright, tangy, fresh; it tasted such as the ocean — as Batista claims it should. The mahi, snapper and shrimp had been plump and plentiful while the diced mango and serrano pepper (tossed in following the acidity for the lime cures the seafood) had been complementary pops of taste.

At the end of this cup lingered the leche de tigre, or “tiger milk, ” which you yourself can drink appropriate from the container. Batista and Reckman both say the tiger milk is recognized as an aphrodisiac. (we refrained from drinking it, thus I can’t attest to the, but inform us. )

For my primary meal, we ordered the reina pepiada arepa ($9), filled with avocado chicken salad, red onion slivers, queso de mano (think mozzarella but saltier) and cilantro. It absolutely was filling and incredibly, great. Empanadas and conventional cachapas that is venezuelan a sweet corn pancake, can also be found.

In addition tried the jardinera — romaine that is ensalada with grape tomatoes, fire-roasted corn, queso fresco, carrots and serrano peppers — which ended up being good, but surely required the kick through the crema de cilantro dressing offered in the s Asado negro de costilla de res picture: Hailey Bollinger

My mate ordered the asado negro de costilla de res ($22), that has been just beautiful. A fusion that is true, it’s a conventional Venezuelan braised brief rib having a panela base (raw sugar that whenever caramelized has a normal barbecue taste), served along with Puerto Rican mofongo (plantains, sofritos and veggie broth, mashed and seasoned) with treasure carrots and a sorghum foam.

The original meals hitched to authentic presentation ended up being well-received by this diner, and Batista hopes everybody comes away with this feeling. Other restaurants when you look at the town have exposed the entranceway to attempting brand new cuisine — he and Reckman mention Salazar, Abigail Street and Please, amongst others — in addition they desire to start it even further.

“We aren’t on the market changes that are making food and recipe to help that it is okay and accepted by somebody, ” says Batista. “We’re attempting to make sure there’s a connection. It’s more about providing that meals the respect it deserves. ”

The group at Maize has also intends to roll down brunch and meal soon.