Meso Maya’s braised achiote pork with black beans. Photography by Kevin Marple

Restaurant Review: Meso Maya

Indulge in a comforting mess of Mexican fare in North Dallas.

At 6:15 on a Thursday evening, the wait for a table at the restaurant’s North Dallas location was 45 minutes, and the throng at the bar was three deep. Once we were seated, we were surrounded by busboys pouring water and setting chips and salsa on the table. A waiter approached within minutes asking for our order. No doubt I wanted my favorite dish here: chef Nico Sanchez’s lovely Budin Azteca, a glorious, comforting mess of melted queso Chihuahua mixed with layers of fresh white corn tortillas and scads of fresh mushrooms, firm squash, onion, and corn, flavored with strands of slightly bitter Swiss chard topped with a gentle tomatillo sauce. It’s well-balanced and is delicious cold, which is how it was delivered to the table. Same for a huge platter filled with semi-inspired blue corn tortillas stuffed with tender brisket, caramelized onion, and roasted poblano (more please!), covered with a tomatillo sauce that could have used a heavier dose of guajillo chiles. An order of flan should have spent less time sitting in the walk-in refrigerator. The egg custard was scented with strong flavors absorbed while waiting to be served. The whipped cream was thick, perhaps overly stabilized with gelatin. It was so dense that the white ball we tossed into a cup of coffee never melted.

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