A Latin Affair: Centro Latin Kitchen And Refreshment Palace.
We all know that Boulder has a little something for everyone, so finding your favorite, go-to restaurant is a breeze! (Unless your me and find it hard to pick favorites…)
Despite my difficulties on choosing a single “favorite restaurant”, I have found Centro Latin Kitchen and Refreshment Palace is consistently at the top of my list. The food is always great, the vibe is always fun, their happy hour is killer and if you’re lucky, they might have live music while you’re there! Plus they always give a nod to my favorite South American holidays and traditions. (Their Carnival celebration is fantastic! Complete with samba dancers and everything!)
Naturally, when out of town friends and family come to Boulder, I make Centro a must-eat spot for us! While my dad and brother were in town this summer, we stopped in for one more dinner before they left for the airport….I didn’t realize I was about to meet the love of my life…. But I’ll get to that in a second.
Located on the West End of Pearl St. the bar is always bustling with locals and industry types, so don’t be surprised if you run into someone you know! The bar staff are superb and they make a killer mojito! If you’re comin in for a couple drinks I recommend cozying up the bar. It’s indoor AND outdoor so you get the best of both worlds.
The rest of the restaurant is a brightly colored and comfortable, offering a cheery vibe. If I owned a home in the Caribbean, it would look like this. Maybe a cool terrace overlooking the ocean… (by the way, don’t you wish Boulder had an ocean!?)
Three out of four of us ordered the “Skirt Steak a la plancha” (great minds think alike) and one out of four of us ordered the street taco platter. Four out of four of our plates were 100% delicious!
I’m not really sure you can go wrong with their street tacos! They’re just like the ones I enjoyed growing up in LA, but with a slightly more gourmet twist (ie garlic shrimp with jalapeno aioli), plus you get to mix and match which ones you get! This platter included: two carnitas and one garlic shrimp.
Go ahead, get a better look:
The steak was cooked fantastic and the salsa was fresh and delicious (although, I do wish a tad spicier!).
But the real star of my meal was the Mexican Corn!! In Mexico and Southern California, stopping by a street food cart to buy some elote (corn) from the “Elote man” is a common occurrence. For a buck or two, he’ll fill a styrofoam cup full of corn and add some mayo and spices to the mix, or you might get the whole cob on a stick smothered in mayo and Mexican seasoning. It’s truly delicious and if you see someone selling it, buy it!! Centro does their own version of elote on the cob, a good amount of lime aioli, spices, and cojita cheese. Here, take a look!
Doesn’t it look fantastic!?
Upon taking a single bite, I knew I had met the love of my life. I didn’t want the love affair to end, but honestly, I ate every last spice covered corn kernel on that cob (and probably in record time too!). I immediately asked our server for the recipe, which he so kindly gave me (!!!) and promised myself I would recreate this so long as the weather allowed for grilling. I continued babbling about the deliciously sweet and spicy love of my life all the way home. I think we’re a match made in heaven.