Ryan and I will be married for 20 years in May, so we know each other pretty well. For Valentine’s Day, I got him a bag full of candy and he got me a bag of hot sauce. In addition, both our cards to one another mention going on adventures together. So yeah, we know each other well.
We tend to make a very big deal out of birthdays and a much smaller deal of Valentine’s Day. This year, we spent the weekend going to Sweetheart Festival on two days with various friends and attending a Super Bowl party. Turns out, by the time Valentine’s Day rolled around, we were more than a little tired.
On the morning of Valentine’s Day, Ryan said, “I’m taking you to tacos or pho tonight. You choose the place.” Done. I chose Cocina & Cantina in Loveland for two reasons. First, we hadn’t been there yet and secondly, it’s the second location of a Mexican restaurant in Berthoud, a place we’d eaten at a handful of times.
I like Concina & Cantina (formerly Mi Concina) in Berthoud. Located in a big Victorian house on a corner downtown, it’s constantly good Mexican food. The space is cozy and the portions are big.
Concina & Cantina in Loveland has a different ambiance. It’s located in a strip mall along Hwy 287 near King Soopers on 29th Avenue. It’s has a more casual dining feeling with a soda machine on the back wall and a small bar in the one open-room restaurant.
We chose a corner table and I ordered a Michelada ($10) and we ordered chips and salsa, $1.50 each. A michelada is like a red beer albeit spicy. Mine was huge and there was no way for me to finish it as I would have suffered from a sodium overdose. It was delicious though. The only other place I’d had one was on the beach in Mexico.
There are street tacos on the menu, although this may be a newer item as I don’t remember it being there. I’ve always gotten big smothered burritos in Berthoud or breakfast burritos from their window (a curious novelty at their Berthoud location).
The salsa is okay, but the chips are warm, a must in our Mexican restaurant book. While Ryan ordered the seafood enchilada ($13.25) and ice tea, I got an asada taco and an al pastor taco, $3.50 each.
We also got the jalapeno toreados ($2.50) which were actually serrano peppers and they were spicy. Ryan ate one like a shishito before he realized this fact and nearly cried. When I say they were HOT, you can believe that they were HOT. I didn’t finish the last one so those who know me, know.
Ryan liked his seafood enchilada that came with shrimp and crab (mostly shrimp) and topped with avocados. He liked it enough that he said he would order next time. I wouldn’t get tacos again. They weren’t exciting and the tortillas were a little limp. However, I would eat at Concina & Cantina again.
They have a list of tortas I’d like to try and I already know the burritos are good. Plus, Ryan thought his enchilada was yummy and he’s not the easiest guy to please when it comes to food. With an excellent happy hour, fair prices, and friendly services, it’s a good Mexican restaurant, it just won’t be my go-to place for tacos.
Cocina & Cantina Fine Mexican Dining, 3151 North Garfield Ave., Loveland, Colorado, 80538
Now, aren’t you hungry for Mexican food?
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