Casa Oaxaca – Culver City – Barbacoa de Chivo

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There’s a serious new Mexican restaurant on the westside – Casa Oaxaca, the wonderful Santa Ana restaurant, has just opened a new location on Venice Boulevard in Culver City. It’s so new that the Grand Opening is later this week – on Friday, August 9.

I met Rogelio and his crew, and tasted their delicious food at the recent East LA Meets Napa fundraiser event, so I’ve been looking forward to this new opening ever since.

The menu is unusually interesting, filled with specialties from the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca. The number of fish and shrimp dishes reflects the long coastline of Oaxaca, and of course, some of the most famous moles are represented. I felt I should choose one of those, but I was just in the mood for barbacoa de chivo, and ordered that. It’s a favorite dish I’ve had in many places, and it usually tastes pretty much the same… delicious but the same. Rogelio’s version, to my surprise, was different, with a rich red broth, boldly spiced, but it’s the spicing that sets it apart from the others. Beautifully presented with black beans, a pyramid of rice, lime wedges and chopped onion and cilantro, I couldn’t have been happier. Even the hand-made tortillas were different, lighter and flakier than usual, reminding me of another Oaxaca specialty, tlayudas (which are also on the menu).

I’m really happy to have such a serious restaurant on the westside, and I know I’ll be stopping by regularly.

Here’s the address: 9609 Venice Boulevard, Culver City, CA 90232

Here’s the website: http://casaoaxacarestaurant.com/

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