This past weekend was full of play and minimal work. We were having so much fun visiting and dishin’ on classic places that we nearly forgot our journalistic duties to have a brand, spanking new article. But not to fear, dear readers, your dedicated Gaby and Trisha will not let you down. We got our act together on Monday evening and went down the list of places that have been on our Dishin’ It radar. However, we forgot that the majority of locally owned and operated eateries do not open on Mondays.
We went down our list and visited each establishment, we were greeted with lights off and closed doors. We felt like Oliver Twist extending our arms out and saying, “Please sir, [we] want some more.”
It was time to bring in the reinforcements. Our loyal sidekick and two other friends chimed in on various options. The one common denominator in all of their suggestions was seafood. Our only request was somewhere nearby since our small tummy grumbles were on the verge of transcending us into a Hangry state of mind.
La Costa Grill is located in the heart of Palms Crossing in McAllen. If that sounds familiar, it is because that is where the city has invested in many shoppes, hotels, a convention center and its newest addition, the McAllen Performing Arts Center.
Unusually busy for a Monday night, many of the businesses and restaurants were probably filled with last minute Christmas shoppers. Note to selves, we must go Christmas shopping ASAP! As we entered La Costa Grill the lively beach murals and bright colors on the walls transported us out of the Valley and into our own personal cabana. Large parties and families filled the tables. As we were seated, we passed a table that was enjoying the last few seconds of their pyrotechnics molcajete show and another table whose guests were gasping from their large shrimp salad dish that was being placed right in front of them. This place looked promising!
We don’t know if we were more excited about all the different salsas on our table or the immense amount of choices we had. One of our guests even exclaimed, “Man, I am going to need a pen and paper to write down everything I want!” Mr. Pepe Habanero, Mr. Pepe Chipotle, Tabasco, Cholulas, Bufalo Salsa Clasica, Las Hamacas and La Anita all accompanied us for dinner. On top of those delicious salsas, the restaurant brought out another two homemade salsas and pickled red onions to top off our post dinner-date heartburn (but so worth it!).
The great thing about bringing along a large group of your friends to dinner is that you get to try everyone’s food and they can’t say anything about it! “Eh, sorry guys! I am taking a bite out of your taco for research purposes,” is a phrase that we have probably used more than once or twice.
As we waited for our order, we were brought a principio of shrimp broth in a small mason jar as well as some tostadas with refried black beans and the aforementioned house salsas. While the principios are basically that, starters, some (or one) of us may have had 1 or 2 extra. As our mini seafood buffet made itself to our table, we could not help but to notice everyone’s eyes looking towards us. It might have been the 6 tacos, the sope de chicharron de pescado, the special rice, the 4 tostadas, the shrimp cocktail or the shrimp broth.
Gaby: A stand out star for me was definitely their special rice. If you have ever visited a local sushi joint and tasted their Yakimeshi rice, this is way better! Sauteed shrimp and octopus, soy, egg, bean sprouts and slightly chopped habaneros will surely give you a kick in your step. Top it off with a Gator Sirloin Taco on a blue tortilla! Yes, you read that right. Gator!
Trisha: For as good as that flavourful chicharrón de pescado taco was with the cheese melted inside the corn tortilla and homemade slaw to complement the taste experience, La Costa's shrimp cocktail was the star of the show for me. Freshly chopped chunks of avocado and finely diced purple onions with cilantro topping off large shrimp emerged in savory cocktail sauce, just asking to be placed atop a Saladitas saltine cracker or crispy tostada, is nothing short of a party for my seafood-loving palate!
Take a break from Holiday shopping and join in on the seafood action at La Costa Grill Sunday through Wednesday from 11:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m. and Thursday through Saturday from 11:00 a.m.-1:00 a.m. Enjoy live music from Friday through Saturday and Happy Hour every Monday through Thursday from 4:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m. La Costa Grill is located at 3300 Expressway 83, McAllen, TX 78501 inside Palms Crossing across the street from Bath & Body Works and next to VomFass. For more information you can call them at (956) 630-9928, visit them at www.lacostagrill.com, or follow them on their social media platforms @restaurant_las_costa_grill.
Gaby Jones and Trisha Watts work hand-in-hand with the service industry. Jones is in charge of craft and imported beer for L&F Distributors-South Texas and Watts is a freelance writer specializing in the marketing of the service industry. Each week they will have a new adventure and provide an opinion on multiple locations throughout the Rio Grande Valley. They can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.