KoMex Review: Vatos Urban Tacos at 36 Beach Rd, Singapore 189677

I've been wanting to check out Korean-Mexican (KoMex, which erm, sounds like another brand) chain Vatos Urban Tacos at South Beach Quarter ever since my friend @Stooffi blogged about it. Everything there looked delicious and they have these upturned beer magaritas (called Vatos' Ritas), which is perfect for that camera shot. The restaurant is tucked away at the corner of the new South Beach compound, just opposite of Purvis Street, and we went there one rainy weekend afternoon for lunch. Originally from Seoul and started by two Korean-Americans, this is Vatos' first venture overseas. They couldn't have picked a better location I reckon, with loads of American/MNC companies working in the South Beach offices.
Vatos Urban Tacos Singapore - Vatos' Ritas

For S$29, you can order a Vatos' Rita, which is a beer margarita. Magarita flavours include strawberry, peach, apple, passion fruit, orange, mango and classic, to be paired with Albens' Apple/Strawberry Cider, Bacardi Breezer, Somersby Apple or Pear Cider, Tangerine Wheat Beer, Mexicali or Corona. While it is quite pricey, remember you're having two drinks in one. Haha. I was amazed at how the beer keeps at a certain level. Some serious physics at work here.

I really liked the decor of the place (and there is no funky smell). Industrial design with red brick walls, naked bulbs and tables made from old pipes. Rather cosy, and the bricks helped to absorb the noise, though I would imagine it could get a little noisy during weekday lunch hour.

Here's some of the menu. They have so many different starters that all look good! I have a slight obsession with avocados, so all their guac items stood out.

This time round we tried the Bacon and Blue Cheese Guacamole (S$16). There are apples in there! I kid you not. The candied walnuts gave the guac a nice crunch, but to be honest we could hardly find any blue cheese chunks and ZERO bacon. A dish that did not really live up to its name. 2/5

We tried to order a Mango Prawn quesadilla, but unfortunately it wasn't keyed in - they forgot about this order! Sigh. But actually it was a good thing because we were quite stuffed before we got them to check for us, and we cancelled the order. Service there was a little sketchy. Staff was friendly, but you have to strive to get their attention sometimes. I wonder if their burgers are any good.

We didn't try the burgers because we're here for their tacos instead! Of course must try, it being my first time there. Prices are decent for the portions, ranging from $10 for 2 to $18 for 3.

We had to order the Korean Pork Belly Tacos (S$15 for 3). It had bits of slightly chewy fats in there, but overall juicy and flavoursome with the sweet marinate. It's almost like tasting pork bulgogi, if you can imagine that sweetness. Still, I can see why they have a thumbs up for this! 3.5/5

Steph also ordered the Baja Fish Tacos ($11 for 2), which I did not try since I am not a fan of fish tacos. Still she said it was yummy - nothing to be afraid of then!

 We also had some specials to go along with our tacos. Next time I'll try their burrito bowls.

The Honey Tequila Chicken Wings (S$18) were what you would expect from any Korean fried chicken joint. These were rather crispy and coated with the all-familiar Bonchon 4 fingers type sauce. Meat was slightly dry/stringy. What tequila? Don't have. Again, menu misses the mark in the flavour description! 3/5

Lastly, we had some Kimchi Carnitas Fries (S$18). It sure is carnage, from the looks of it. The fries were rather comforting and I didn't mind the onions. The sour kimchi gave this dish character, though I wished the cheese wouldn't congeal that fast since we had other items to get to. Also wished it would be under the starters portion with a more affordable price tag. 3.5/5

Vatos Urban Tacos is one of the rare Korean Mexican restaurants in town, and if they can keep up the food quality and perhaps re-look their prices (though I doubt they can since rent must be exorbitant), it will be a great place to hang out. Otherwise it is still worth a try if you're looking for some delicious tacos.

Vatos Urban Tacos
36 Beach Road, South Beach Quarter, Singapore 189767
Tel: +65 63856010 or +65 63856970
Mon to Thu: 11.30am – 11pm, Fri to Sat: 11.30am – 12am
Closed on Sundays

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