Hey There, Hot Stuff 

Mexican eateries are heating up the St. Louis culinary scene

There's no shortage of Mexican food in St. Louis, some of it innovative, some of it mediocre, most of it highly Americanized. Here's some recent news on the local scene:

· Speaking of Nuevo Latino, Mirasol is slated to debut sometime soon on Delmar, across from the Pageant.

· Lilly's Mexican Restaurant moved from Gravois to 4601 South Kingshighway (at Devonshire Avenue) in south St. Louis. Remember, Lilly makes great posole on Saturdays.

· La Cocina Loca on Gravois in Sappington, part of the Del Pietro family's empire of restaurants, has closed. The family's Culinart Group is opening Tavern 43 at 7927 Forsyth Boulevard in Clayton.

· Qdoba, a Denver-based chain of Mexican fast-casual eateries, opened its first St. Louis location this past August in Fenton, and another one in November in the Manchester Commons shopping mall. The third local operation is due to open soon in the old Streetside Records site at the corner of Arsenal Street and South Grand Boulevard in the city!

· Ramon's Jalapeño is out and Tejas Grill and Cantina is in at 44 North Brentwood Boulevard in Clayton. Steve Gontram's (Harvest) Southwestern restaurant, which opened January 23, is serving Nuevo Latino specialties such as "hoja santa-wrapped gulf snapper on refried pinto beans with citrus-chayote-red onion jam and a chimayo chile mojo."¿Comprende?

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