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First look at the food at Mission Cantina

Danny Bowien follows up Mission Chinese Food with a highly anticipated Mexican restaurant.

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Danny Bowien

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Tacos at Mission Cantina

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Chicken wings at Mission Cantina

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Rotisserie chicken at Mission Cantina

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Mission Cantina

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Mission Cantina

Last summer, a liquor-license meeting spurred rumors that the next move for rock-star chef Danny Bowien would be a Mexican joint called Mission Cantina, located a block from the beloved (but currently shuttered) Mission Chinese Food. Bowien was tight-lipped about the space until just this month, when he revealed plans for the 41-seat spot. Turning from his brand of innovative Szechuan eats, he changes the tune for his sophomore act, with a fresh take on Mexican fare. Like his flagship, Bowien puts in work little seen elsewhere, nixtamalizing Anson Mills corn for fresh tortillas and making creamy, stretchy Oaxacan-style cheese—the Mexican equivalent of burrata—in house. He also puts the Bowien touch on classic dishes, like a ceviche made with Hokkaido scallops and beef heart, and rotisserie chicken, which he stuffs with rice and chorizo, an idea he picked up in Korea. Tacos include traditonal versions like al pastor, as well as offbeat offerings, such as chicken liver. We've got the first look at food in the slide show above; check out the soon-to-open restaurant's the full menu below. 172 Orchard St at Stanton St (212-254-2233)


Hokkaido scallop and beef heart ceviche- capers, olives, citrus
Soft scrambled eggs- sea urchin, jalapeno pickles, chicharron
Fresh queso Oaxaca- hickory smoked, olio nuovo, marinated poblano peppers
Chicken wings, llaxacalla- mole spices, crema, sesame
Ensalada Caesar cardini- romaine lettuce, anchovy dressing

Lamb- beer braised and dry spiced, coriander, crema
Al pastor- rotisserie pork, fermented pineapple
Chicken liver- tostada, creamed white beans, pickled chili morita
Carnitas- three textures of pork- gently cooked in pork fat
Beef tongue- cooked in whey, steamed onions, peanuts
Alambres- beef brisket, smoked bacon, peppers and onions

Hongos- 5 types of mushrooms,  epazote, charred queso Oaxaca
Spicy greens- fresh corn, toasted seeds

Chicken- garbanzo beans, epazote, mint
Lamb- lima beans, chili and onions
Pork- fresh hominy, cabbage, radishes

Rotisserie chicken- stuffed with rice and chorizo

Arroz con pollo– tomato, chicken fat, egg
Lechuga al mojo de ajo– steamed lettuce, dried shrimp, fresh butter and garlic sauce
Lima beans – pickles, olives
Broken black beans– schmaltz, hoja santa
Spicy carrot pickles – pineapple, clove, cinnamon and anise
Charred cauliflower escabeche – rosemary, rice vinegar
Cebollitas – grilled spring onions, butter, citron

Negra Modelo
Modelo Especial

Cantina sangría
Lil’ Luche– soju, pineapple, yuzu, calpico, spice
Como la Flor– soju, cantaloupe, orange, mint, prosecco