Iguana Mexican Grill is not your typical Mexican fare.
It has been a while since Tammy and I have gone out to eat, and we set a date for today and I decided to try Iguana Mexican Grill to see what all the fuss was about since it had won The Gazette’s top Mexican restaurant for 2012. We arrived and it took a few minutes of waiting out front for the host to come to the front and then seat us. It wasn’t busy, it was between lunch and dinner, (linner). We were sat at a funky old metal table with a metal top that wobbled. The wobbling was due to either an uneven floor or an old table. Our table was not the only one that wobbled either. There was a table near us that wobbled so bad as they were leaving the drink fell over and spilled all over the place.
Almost immediately after being sat we were presented with chips and fresh salsa, and after ordering it a bowl of queso sauce. The chips were nice and thick and not overly salted. They were house fried and held on to the salsa and queso nicely without breaking into a million pieces. Tammy thought the cheese sauce was really good, and the salsa was flavorful but could have used a bit more heat. I thought it had a good flavor, but either needed more jalapenos, or the ones that were in there needed their seeds or part of their membranes intact to give it a bit more heat.
I decided on a veggie burrito. I asked for black beans and roasted red potatoes. I also asked for some of the potatoes to be in the burrito as well. It took a minute for that to sink in to the waiter, but that is to be expected since I am one of those that ask for weird stuff. Of course I also asked for no cheese and sour cream as well. The food came out correct the first time. No cheese and there were potatoes inside. The black beans were pretty good. They were in a thick sauce with enough cumin and chilli powder to taste it. The sauce got thicker as the beans got cold. The roasted red potatoes were good, had a nice flavor to them and not over roasted. The burrito was big, it had a red almost enchilada sauce on top of it with a slightly smoky flavor to it. To me it was different but not overpowering. The burrito was stuffed with the potatoes I asked for, black beans, rice, mushrooms, red onions, carrots, and bell peppers. I think the burrito could have standed to have a bit more sauce on it, and it was flavorful. It could have had a bit more heat to it though spice wise.
Tammy was a bit unsure about the menu and asked the waiter a few questions. She isn’t a big fan of ground beef and prefers shredded. There wasn’t any shredded beef on the menu and then asked some suggestions. Per the waiter’s suggestion she got a pork enchilada and beef enchilada and had them topped with the queso sauce and a lot of cheese. The way the waiter was describing the way the pork and beef was prepared it threw us off saying that the beef had a smokey flavor. It tasted like they put bbq beef in the enchiladas not the smokey flavor the waiter was describing. It was a strange combination to her, because she was expecting the typical mexican flavors, not the flavors of a bbq joint. The pork tasted weird to her and was kind of tough. She tried to eat it but after a few bites couldn’t and sent it back for chicken ones instead. The chicken ones had a few small chunks and shreds of chicken and were very dry and flavorless. The queso that was poured over it had all the flavor. She also mentioned that the beans were too thick for her, and thickened as time went by. I think she did like the flavors of them and asked me what the spices were. She thought that the best part of the meal was the salsa and queso. Oh the water was great also.
To me it seemed like Iguana is more Tex-Mex than Mexican. Most of the places we go to for Mexican is more traditional, and this was throwing us off since the flavors were not those that we are usually accustomed to. I hate to give a bad review to a place that has a flavor profile to what we are not used to. We came there expecting good traditional Mexican and received Tex-Mex instead. We struggled with the table being so wobbly, and it only takes a shove of a napkin or two under the table for that to be stabilized. Also the restroom is not labeled at all and I had to get the attention of a staff member to ask where the bathroom was, and it was behind a door right next to me. The waiter was very nice and took the time to help explain things to us and didn’t seem to have an attitude when Tammy sent her food back. He understood it wasn’t her cup of tea and she quickly got her remake. Because the flavors weren’t quite what we expect for Mexican food we probably won’t be back, however if you like Tex-mex and you like the fusion of bbq and Mexican this is probably for you. Just be careful about the wobbly tables especially when getting up from the table and watch your drink.
Iguana Mexican Grill can be found at
9 NW 9th St. (btwn Broadway & Oklahoma),
Oklahoma City, OK 73102