Si Casa Tequilas

Taco salads, enchiladas and tacos are among the fare offered at Si Casa Tequilas.Bob Pennell

South-of-the-border fare that is a cut above most Mexican food in Medford is served at the new Si Casa Tequilas restaurant on North Front Street.

Si Casa's menu features all of the familiar dishes — enchiladas, tacos, burritos, nachos and more — found at nearly every Mexican restaurant in the area. Yet somehow, its food has just a tad more quality.

Word of Mouth

Dining out with

the Mail Tribune

Si Casa Tequila

42 N. Front St.

Medford

541-622-8557

Open 11:30 to 9 p.m.

Monday through Thursday;

11:30 a.m. to close

Friday and Saturday.

Closed Sundays.

There are now four Si Casa restaurants. Others are located in the Blue Sky Plaza at McAndrews Avenue and Biddle Road, the Albertsons Shopping Center on North Phoenix Road and at The Shoppes at Exit 24 off Fern Valley Road in Phoenix. A former Si Casa, in the WinCo Shopping Center, is now run by a different owner.

The new location might be the owners' attempt to garner some of the downtown bar trade. The lounge is an open space, shared with dining tables and some booths. However, there are a couple of banquet rooms that were filled with private parties last Friday night.

My dining partner and I arrived just after 7 p.m. and were lucky to get a table — or we could have taken our meals at the bar. We also were just in time for the happy hour margaritas. Premixed versions of these cocktails are available for $5 from 6 to 8 p.m.

We passed on the premixes and settled on sipping a couple of Pacificos until our food arrived.

I'm always tempted to order the nachos. This generous dish — usually listed as an appetizer on most menus — has everything about Mexican fare that I like: crunchy corn chips, melted cheese, salsa, guacamole and assorted other ingredients, depending on personal preference.

Perhaps I should go back to all of Southern Oregon's Mexican food restaurants, dine only on nachos and let this one dish set the standard of quality for each place ... along with the margaritas.

Instead I ordered a combination plate with a chicken enchilada and a chile relleno ($11.95). My dining partner went for a combination of three items ($12.95).

Combination plates come with the usual lineup of creamy refried beans and rice, and fillings of choice: beef, cheese, chicken or picadillo (ground beef in tomato sauce).

The hot platters of food held more than we could eat, but the food was good and left us feeling satisfied. I'm always amazed at how the chefs can take a shred of a poblano pepper and turn it into something that looks so large on the plate. I scraped off the thick breading and enjoyed the tasty cooked pepper and some white cotija cheese.

Si Casa Tequilas is open from 11:30 to 9 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and from 11:30 a.m. to close on Fridays and Saturdays. The restaurant is closed Sundays.

Call 541-622-8557 for take-out orders.

— Laurie Heuston


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