Food & Drink

Tex-Mex Cuisine Hits Byron Bay This Weekend

El Camino Cantina. Image: Tom Ferguson

El Camino Cantina is bringing their Tex-Mex dining experience to Byron Bay this weekend, and we’ve got all the deets!

The Texan/Mexican establishment will swing open their doors at midday on Thursday 25 April in Byron Bay’s newly opened retail, dining and entertainment precinct Mercato on Byron. From there, expect a four-day extravaganza featuring all-weekend-long, $2 tacos and happy hour from 4pm to 6pm each day.

Among the wild menu items is El Camino’s famous margaritas, served frozen or on the rocks, and in a rainbow of flavours: classic, strawberry, mango and tropical Red Bull. And as a charitable gesture, El Camino Cantina will donate $1 from every full-price margarita sold over the four-day launch weekend to the Byron Bay Community Benefit Fund, which provides support to the most vulnerable in the Byron Bay community through direct services and assistance. Tequila has never tasted so good!

Guests can also indulge in complimentary refillable baskets of tortilla chips and salsas, served from converted Chevvy trunks, as they buckle in for a festive, music-fuelled Tex-Mex ride.

El Camino Cantina is unashamedly Tex-Mex, bringing a heartfelt blend of true southern American cuisine and a rambunctious interior design. Their walls are a visual feast of bright, custom-made artwork and bold rock posters by artist Ben Brown, matched with colourful calavera and other quirky touches which fuse with accents of rustic Mexican haciendas. Over the launch period, customers will go into a draw to win one of 25, limited-edition, signed, screen prints by Australian punk music and surf art icon Ben Brown, who has created El Camino Cantina’s floor-to-ceiling mural of board short and bikini-clad skeletons surfing The Pass.

And then there’s the menu, featuring plenty of value-packed, crowd-pleasing dishes that cater to all sorts of dietary requirements.

Signature dishes include a selection of soft-shell tacos stuffed with seven flavour combinations including mushrooms with chipotle coleslaw, yoghurt and scallions, and beer-battered barramundi doused with green mango salsa and jalapeno aioli. All tacos can be upgraded to Cadillac versions with the addition of Mexican rice and refried beans on the side.

Nachos are served with chilli con carne or vegetarian chilli, and a loaded version is topped with melted cheese, black beans, chilli con carne, smoked BBQ brisket, pico de gallo, sour cream and guacamole. Sizzling, chargrilled fajitas come with a choice of six fillings, including confit portobello, and hickory-smoked BBQ brisket, which is slow-braised in smoke-mix and hickory marinade for six hours.

A trio of brazen burritos is stuffed with chipotle chicken, brisket and queso, or black bean and vegetables. For those watching the waistline, there’s a healthier burrito option called the naked burrito, bursting with avocado, salsa fresca, red cabbage, cucumber, Spanish onion, beans, corn, tortilla crisps and ume coriander dressing from an iceberg lettuce bowl. Add a protein boost with the inclusion of adobe-spiced chicken breast, Angus beef or prawns.

Other must-try dishes include crisp quesadillas, hot buffalo wings, jalapeno poppers and queso blanco, which can be topped with chilli con carne, salsa fresca or pickled jalapenos.

El Camino Cantina’s other unmissable daily deals, apart from weekday happy hour from 4pm to 6pm and $2 taco Tuesdays, are 10-cent buffalo wings every Wednesday, half-price fajitas on Thursdays, and a $15 burrit-and-beer weekday lunch special.

The wild Tex-Mex experience also rambles in the drinks menu, which heroes El Camino Cantina’s signature, machine-blended margaritas, where a new, limited-edition ‘rita is unveiled each month. Beer lovers can cruise through a selection of Australian craft brews, flagship Mexican draught and bottled cervezas.

El Camino Cantina is perfect for budget-friendly, week-day meal deals; casual, barefoot n’ beachy sundowner sessions with frozen margaritas and shared dishes; sombrero-splashed group celebrations with set menus; and super-chilled, lazy, weekend brunches.

Check it out tomorrow at midday!

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