For those tired of preparing Mexican food from a luridly coloured cardboard box, Acland St Cantina – the Melbourne Pub Group’s contribution to Melbourne’s Latin dining scene – aims to broaden your horizons with the opening of its own Mexi-Mart. It’s a one-stop shop for enthusiastic cooks who desire nothing more than authenticity in their tacos, tortillas and tamales.
Chef Paul Wilson, fresh from a trip to Mexico, has made stocking the shelves of this store a labour of love. The shop is overflowing with the fundamental Latin ingredients including Maseca masa flour for homemade tacos, a variety of dried Mexican chillies ranging from spicy to mind-numbingly powerful, La Chinata smoked paprika and San Miguel huitlacoche (the rare fungus that grows on ears of corn after an errant rainstorm and is valued as a luxurious addition to quesadillas).
For those overwhelmed by the options, the Mexi-Mart will also supply seasonal recipe kits, beginning with their autumnal offering, which takes the form of an ancient grain risotto. These kits not only include a detailed recipe, but also all of the ingredients required for the dish – a significant bonus for those with time constraints.
Of course, there are also options available for those more concerned with eating Mexican food than cooking it, with takeaway choices ranging from organic Black Angus quesadillas to bacon-wrapped Mexican hot dogs, rounded out by treats such as the salted caramel ice cream churros tacos.
The Mexi-Mart has options for everyone. Whether you’re whipping up authentic moles and frying off corn fritters on a regular basis, or you present a major fire hazard by simply walking into your kitchen, a trip down to St Kilda seems in order for all lovers of Latin food and flavours.
Acland St Cantina’s Mexi-Mart
2 Acland Street, St Kilda
(03) 9536 1175