El Local Loco
El Local Loco is the place to go for Mexican brunch. Though they also offer lunch and dinner fare, the brunch menu is arguably the most unique from chef Adam Dolley, and isn’t afraid to get you loco with margaritas and tequila shots in the morning.
The restaurant on lower Church Street is large and outfitted with hefty wooden tables, loud murals and Mexican-inspired decor.
The huevos rancheros ($10) play with typical plating, stacked in layers rather than soft tortillas laid flat. It’s a tower of crunchy corn tostadas sandwiching refried beans and chorizo topped with guac, crema and eggs.
They do a variety of Mexican-inspired bennies with toppings ranging from just pico to carnitas or lobster. We compromise with the strip bacon benny, which like all the rest is served with crispy home fries and a unique cilantro and avocado hollandaise on English muffins. The eggs are cooked perfectly, and the sauce saves this staple from ordinariness.
For something sweet, we try churro french toast ($13) served with cinnamon grilled pineapple topped with tequila cherries.
If you’re about to hunker down for a night of fun with a pal or five, try the Smokin’ Skull ($30).
El Local Loco ages their own Tromba tequila in oak barrels, smokes a skull receptacle, then mixes up the tequila with lime and agave, pouring it into the skull and finally infusing it with hickory smoke.
The grande margarita ($13) is more personally sized but equally lethal, a nice punchy margarita topped with an extra shot of tequila in a hollowed-out lime half that you can take straight or dump into the rest of the drink.
I’m a huge michelada fan so I’m happy to see a good one served in Toronto. It wasn’t on their official menu when I visited but if it’s still not when you arrive, demand one: this traditionally light combination of beer, tomato juice mix and spices is one of my favourite cocktails.
Wide windows at the front illuminate higher, larger tables and smaller, more dimly light tables recede towards the back. A central bar is the focal point of the space, with elaborate displays of casks of Tromba.