Mama’s Cantina may have the same name and address as Mama’s Mexican Kitchen, the beloved Seattle institution that was open from 1974 to 2016, but its culinary vision is decidedly different. Chef Jenny Izaguirre roasts a whole pig weekly for her mojo pork dishes, and Mama’s signature carne asada “Elvis Burrito” is now made with Wagyu skirt steak (and costs $12). There are still tacos and quesadillas, but in place of old family recipes for chili verde, chili rellenos, and enchiladas covered in melted cheese, there’s guacamole with grilled pineapple, a Korean quesadilla with kimchi and kalbi-marinated steak, and a banh mi burrito. Tequila (over 40 varieties) and margaritas still abound.
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