El Centro D.F. Celebrates Tequila Month
All through July, both El Centro D.F. taqueria and tequileria locations on 14th Street NW and in Georgetown are celebrating National Tequila Month with tequila enriched dishes and tequila infused drinks. Plus, both restaurants are serving a tequila gelato from Dolcezza.
All month long, the restaurants are pouring two new house-made tequila infusions along with their regular menu of more than 250 blue agave spirits: pineapple/sage and grapefruit/lime/lemongrass in addition to El Centro’s 10 seasonal infusion flavors. The two new infusions are served straight-up or with a splash of soda for $5 each. They can also be used for tasty margaritas. We got a preview of the menu recently.
Margaritas made with either of infusions are a good choice, but I found the grapefruit/lime/lemongrass margarita was especially tasty and thirst quenching on the back patio in 90-degree temperatures. It was the tarter of the two with a sour punch. The grapefruit almost takes a backseat allowing the tequila to sneak through. The pineapple/sage is sweeter, the sage adds depth, and the house margarita mix is light and refreshing letting the tequila bask in the limelight. But be careful, you can easily drink three or four of these without batting an eyelash.
The three special dishes being served for tequila month include a grilled shrimp cerviche appetizer ($10), a Reposado Tequila-cured and smoked pork tenderloin entree ($22) and Dolcezza’s Anejo Tequila gelato ($7). Each can be ordered separately or as a meal for $35.
The grilled shrimp is marinated in a citrus-chile broth, along with some grapefruit, cucumber, jicama and red onion topped with a frozen margarita float. The Reposado Tequila-cured and smoked pork tenderloin is topped with chile morita sauce and served with roasted corn and epazote, and poblano rajas-potato purée. The pork has a distinct tequila flavor and was incredibly moist. The cheesy poblano-potato purée was an odd shade or green, but delicious and owner Richard Sandoval should add it permanently to the menu. The gelato is served on a house-made Mexican chocolate waffle cone bowl and topped with cajeta and berries or mint. Be warned, this icy treat has a strong tequila flavor and isn’t very sweet. It definitely isn’t for the kids. The mint and Mexican chocolate cone were tasty companions and added texture to the creamy gelato.
Meet the Maker dinners
On July 14 and 21, both restaurants will hold Meet the Maker dinners allowing tequila aficionados to meet representatives from the world’s leading tequila companies. Seating is available from 6-8 p.m. Dinner begins with a private reception with passed hors d’oeuvres and tequila cocktails followed by a three-course dinner including ceviche, a signature entrée and dessert, all paired with tequila. Guests will go home with a gift bag that includes an El Centro D.F. T-shirt. Meet the Maker dinners are $69 and limited to 50 guests at the 14th Street location and 32 guests at Georgetown. Reservations can be made through Living Social.
National tequila month party
On July 28, the two restaurants will hold a National Tequila Month party from 5-8 p.m. Guests will receive three drink tickets and be served a buffet that includes carnitas; brisket and nopal tacos with molcajete, verde and morita salsa, pico de gallo, creama and lettuce; refried beans; Mexican rice; chips with salsa and guacamole; mini chorizo empanadas; chicken tinga flautas; mini mushroom quesadillas; and mini open-face tortas. There will also be DJs playing music throughout the restaurants from 5 p.m.-closing. Regular dinner service will resume at 8 p.m. Tickets are $39 each and available on Living Social.
Editor-in-Chief Mark Heckathorn is a journalist, movie buff and foodie. He oversees DC on Heels editorial operations as well as strategic planning and staff development. Reach him with story ideas or suggestions at dcoheditor (at) gmail (dot) com.