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Coyoacán Social (CLOSED)

  • Restaurants
  • Eveleigh
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Recommended

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

Locomotive Street’s newest tenant is giving back to the community one taco at a time

Head to South Eveleigh’s Locomotive Street any weekday lunchtime and you’ll find buzzy lines of office workers mobbing the doorways of established Sydney chains like Kürtősh, Pepper Seeds and Anita Gelato, not to mention Kylie Kwong’s excellent eatery, Lucky Kwong. But quietly frying churros and packing tacos is their lo-fi neighbour that has more than food to shout about.

Coyoacán Social is the new Mexico street food outfit that’s moved into a tangerine-orange shipping container in the wall next to the Commonwealth Bank building. It’s the third restaurant from Plate It Forward, the social enterprise that already has Sydney favourites Colombo Social and Kabul Social to their name.

This time, Plate it Forward’s founder Shaun Christie-David has teamed up with head chef Roman Cortes to create this homage to Mexican street food. The restaurant donates meals to people facing long-term unemployment and food insecurity in both Sydney and Mexico, including to the centre that helped Cortes himself overcome addiction in Mexico City. The organisation also works with local charities to create a safe space within the Redfern and South Eveleigh communities that surround their latest eatery.

So, what about the food? The small menu draws on Cortes’ family recipes from Mexico City, Jalisco and Coyoacán, featuring familiar exports like tacos, quesadillas, tostadas and nachos. There are three types of quesadillas; the chicken tinga coming recommended, with smoky chipotle-style chicken with fresh cream, cheese and lettuce.

There are two choices of tacos. The quesabirria type is filled with a hearty, stew-like beef marinade (plus an extra dipping consommé for those who like it extra meaty), and served with a squeeze of lemon to counterbalance the salt. The cochinita pibil edition, meanwhile, is inspired by the traditional Yucatecan marinated pork dish of the same name, and packed with citrus-infused pulled pork, pickled onions, pineapple and habanero sauce.

The food is good value, fast out, and offers a few lesser-known dishes from a well-trodden cuisine. Their flautasdeep, for example, comes as three cigar-sized tortillas, rolled up and deep-fried, and stuffed with cheese, salsa verde and chipotle chicken. Served unfussy on a bed of shredded lettuce and beneath a scattering of grated cheese, these are next-level tacos, dripping with a creamy sauce but carrying a satisfying crunch.

There’s plenty for sweet teeth, too. One churros serve features four tubes of crisp, fried dough, tossed in sugar and cinnamon, with a dipping pot of cajeta – a style of thickened caramel made from goat’s milk. The drinks list includes a saccharine iced horchata, made from white rice soaked in water, and Jamaica, a sweet traditional Mexican hibiscus tea (named because the hibiscus plant was originally brought to Mexico from Jamaica). For office lunchers counting down the clock to afterwork drinks, there’s also a non-alcoholic Margarita to ease you into the afternoon.

Plate it Forward’s third launch looks destined to follow in the footsteps of Colombo Social and Kabul Social as another stronghold for purpose-based dining. Ideal for both grab-and-go lunches and dine-in gorging, Coyoacán Social’s menu has you covered for Mexican comfort food classics, as well as traditional dishes that deserve more of the spotlight. Most importantly, though, every meal purchased here makes a tangible contribution to someone in need.

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Written by
Hugo Mathers


Shop 8/1
Locomotive St
Opening hours:
Mon-Fri 11am-3pm; Fri, Sat 6am-6pm
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