Get it? Via con "deals." It's like via con dios, which means "go with God" in Spanish. But I used the word deals because you can get great deals at the Mexican Market... Moving on.
What's the deal with Mexican food in Columbus? It's a question I've been asking myself recently after visiting a couple of disappointing Mexican restaurants. But never one to dwell on the negative when it comes to food, I decided to check out a Mexican market here in Columbus and see if I can't make some sweet Mexican meals at home, like a sexy, female Rick Bayless.
Do you know what I found? Michoacana Mexican Market. And do you know how many there are? TEN! There are ten Michoacana Mexican Markets. There are eight in Columbus, one in Hilliard and one in Dayton. Did you know this? I certainly didn't and I try to keep up on what's happening in and around the Columbus food scene.
So last week my boyfriend and I ventured out to the Michoacana Mexican Market at 2175 Morse Road because at 16,000 sq. ft., it's the largest in a growing chain of Latino food stores.
While this is a part of town we don't visit much, I was happy to see the Rigsby's catering van in the parking lot because let's face it, if Rigsby's is getting their ingredients here, it's certainly worth investigating.
Upon entering, I immediately realized just how much cooler Michoacana is than the "ethnic foods" section of any American grocery store. Just look at the array of pinatas above the produce section!
Aside from the pinatas, the first thing I noticed was some excellent deals on produce. Where else can you find 6 limes for $1.00? That's some cheap limes.
Next we headed to the meat counter and I've rarely seen so many exotic meats in one place here in Columbus. I was especially interested in the Carne Al Pastor (marinated pork with pineapple) and the Fajitas De Res (beef fajitas with the pepper and onions already mixed in). These butchers know what they're doing so if they want to marinate the meat for you ahead of time, you go for it.
And here's a bunch of photos of the other cool stuff you'll find at Michoacana including toastadas, mexican candy, queso fresco, an entire row of dried chilis and Mexican Coke. True story: I hate Coke but I LOVE Mexican Coke with it's delicious natural sugar. Screw you American Coke and your nasty corn syrup!
A few more things worth noting, I haven't tried Sol Cerveza yet, but at $1.99 for a 32 ounce bottle of beer, I definitely picked up a few to sample at our next Mexican night. Also, Michoacana has the largest aisle of Jesus candles I've ever seen. They're $1.69 per candle, that's cheap, and Cinco De Mayo is coming up.
I do want to note that while this is an awesome grocery store for produce, meats and Mexican baked goods which I did not get a good photo of, I wouldn't come here for all my shopping. Case in point, the day we were here, they were out of butter.
I also want to mention that while nearly everyone shopping and working spoke Spanish, they were super helpful and patient and there was staff available to answer questions in English.
Last but not least, the Michoacana on Morse Road has a restaurant inside the grocery store serving up authentic Mexican cuisine. I have not eaten there so I can't comment on the food but I plan to return soon and check it out. It's open 9A to 10P daily and they serve breakfast, lunch and dinner which I'm hoping will be as surprisingly awesome as the grocery store is.