I had heard some buzz about the excellent quality Mexican food at Corazon De Maiz (55 Byward Market Square, Ottawa). There was even an a CTV Morning Live segment at this restaurant a year ago showing how they prepare the food.
I arrived shortly after 12 noon to the storefront located in the Byward Market Square building to find a small line up of about 4 customers with three employees serving including the two featured in the CTV Morning Live video. The line moved consistently forward with two employees building the customers meal by hand using fresh ingredients and one last employee ringing up the orders at the cash register.
A quick look beyond the cash register, there are only three or four tables plus a bar area to eat. Thus, before saying "for here" make sure there is space for you and your friends in the seating area. Space is tight, but it is also in the Byward Market Building's other restaurants as well. To the credit of this business they always try to keep the tables clean and moving so customers can have a seat.
The food? Well let's get to that as I advanced in line I was pleasantly greeted and inquired of what I like to order.
The Order: 1 12" (Large) Beef Burrito.
While moving through the different toppings to fill my Burrito I was inquired with as to different options. I had originally said "everything on it" to try and get the full experience of Corazon De Maize. But I'm glad the server inquired as to if I would like rice (of course) and that he normally skips the hot sauce as it is available to the customer behind you when standing in line to put on a whatever you like.
I chose a "to go" option as the front seating area was full and elbow room was at a premium. Plus, I also had a free coffee from Tim Hortons Roll Up The Rim Contest burning a hole in my pocket. So I departed for the Rideau Centre Food Court to grab my coffee and eat there.
The Beef Burrito was excellent! Neatly wrapped but bulging with fresh and, still warm, roast beef and freshly chopped lettuce, tomatoes and everything else. The burrito was lovingly prepared and put together by two employees (brother & sister?) who obviously care what they serve.
Overall Corazon De Maize provides freshly prepared in house foods with a Mexican flavour. Original Mexican recipes are used to prepare authentic dishes like Nachos, Burritos and others. The price for the Burrito was $8.00 plus tax which may be a little expensive for some. But it is well worth trying Corazon De Maize at least once for lunch to enjoy real authentic Mexican cooking.
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