Let the fiesta begin at Rosa Mexicano’s newest location next to Fashion Centre at Pentagon City. Diners embrace the upscale Mexican cuisine, delivered in a comfortable and lively atmosphere. Margarita fans will be impressed with a wide variety of quench-worthy options. Start off with warm, salty tortilla chips and roasted tomato salsa, but be sure to order the signature tableside guacamole. The entertaining presentation offers freshly prepared avocado goodness, custom-made to your liking. Classics like chicken flautas are tasty starters, with pulled chicken loosely wrapped in a crispy-thin tortilla.
Diners also have the option to choose from the menu’s inventive tacos. Our party enjoyed the fresh ahi tuna version — four mini-tacos, topped with avocado slivers and chopped cilantro. Pick your three favorite enchiladas for $29 to get a taste of classics and new twists. We devoured the roasted chicken suizas enchilada, but the duck carnitas with mole poblano was a welcome addition. Order cinnamon sugar-tossed churros for dessert served with dark chocolate and raspberry-guajillo dipping sauces. It’s the perfect way to cap the meal.
The restaurant opened in mid-December and clearly is working out kinks. Staffing was sparse and order times were lengthy even on a weeknight. Acoustics in the loud setting made for difficulty hearing servers. But take heart — Rosa Mexicano’s authentic cuisine and inspired offerings provide the foundation for a formidable addition to Mexican dining in the region. Fashion Centre at Pentagon City: 1100 S. Hayes St., Arlington
See This: massive bubbly water wall with whimsical swimmer figures
Eat This: tableside guacamole en molcajete, tampiqueña, churros
Monday – Wednesday, 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m., Thursday; 11:30 a.m.-10:30 p.m.; Friday & Saturday; 11:30 a.m.-11 p.m.; Sunday, 4 p.m.-10 p.m.
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