After finding success with their first location of Mi Corazon (“my heart” in Spanish) in Glendale, husband-and-wife duo Jeremy and Vanessa Swan have continued to spread their love of food with a new location in Silver Lake. Situated in the former Maré space on Hyperion, Mi Corazon offers up delicious homemade Mexican cooking with a health-conconscious focus.
The focal point of Mi Corazon, is of course, a beautiful stained glass red heart in a wood frame surrounded by tequila bottles. However, much of the restaurant’s décor, with its ornate frames, carved crucifixes and flickering lanterns, is dark and slightly gothic – clearly inspired by Jeremy Swan’s nearby Broken Art Tattoo shop, where he serves as owner and talented artist, as well as where he has appeared on TLC America’s Worst Tattoos covering up other artists’ mistakes.
We started the meal off with a drink. The restaurant’s beverage program includes over 60 tequilas and mezcals, Mexican-style boilermakers, classic margaritas, and specialty craft libations, including a margarita with sliced pears and an exciting flaming blue cocktail. They also offer an array of beers that include Tecate, Modelo, Negra Modelo and Ocho Reales Pilsner. For nonalcoholic drinks, they offer horchata, Jarritos, Mexican cola and agua frescas.
While sipping an el clasico margarita made with silver tequila, agave and lime juice, our server brought a basket of yellow and blue corn tortilla chips, along with four different salsas. The choices included serrano, smooth chipotle cream, Pancho Villa and a chunky pico de gallo with chopped tomatoes, onions, peppers and cilantro.
My favorite starter was the queso fundido – a Mexican fondue made with melted Monterey Jack cheese and pico de gallo. It’s served in a black skillet on top of a flame to stay smooth and warm.
I also thoroughly enjoyed a generous portion of elote, served in a bowl rather than on the cob so as to avoid a mess. What makes this street corn so tasty is the salsa aioli, lavish sprinkling of Mexican chili powder and Mexican cheese on top. Thinly sliced radished decorated the dish and offered a peppery bite.
Before moving on to tacos, steaming bowls of pozole verde were delivered to our table. Made with organic chicken stewed in a mild green chile broth, the classic soup also featured hominy, avocado and cabbage, which enhanced the soup’s base.
My eyes really widened, however, when a large platter of beer-battered fish tacos arrived with an artful drizzle of white cream on top of shredded cabbage, and a chopped mango and tomatillo chutney. To follow up, we munched on grilled wild-caught jumbo shrimp tacos. Both were very delicious and as I learned, healthier than just your typical tacos. To ensure their tacos and platters are non-GMO and hormone-free, the Swans work with only certain vendors who supply grass-fed beef, organic chicken and wild-caught seafood.
Continuing our meal, we tried two hard-shell tacos – the potato with hominy corn, green onion, chipotle and Monterey Jack cheese, as well as the ground beef and pickle taco. Both were good, but the Mexican spices and pickle brought a pleasing kick of flavor to the beef taco.
Mi Corizon also serves a variety of platters, including sizzling fajitas, red snapper with chopped peanuts, Mexican spices, and grilled vegetables with vegan rice and beans. The wild-caught jumbo shrimp is topped with a spicy red chili cream sauce, and the chicken mole is made with chicken thighs smothered with their house-made, 20-ingredient sauce that includes peanuts and sesame seeds. If you’re in the mood for something simpler, the restaurant also offers burritos and enchiladas stuffed with a vegetable medley, chicken, beef or cheese. The dishes can be topped with a choice of either salsa roja, mole or chile verde sauce for a bit of spice.
As a pastry chef, Vanessa proved her worth with her plates of flan, choco flan and gooey Mexican chocolate cake. I especially enjoyed the flan, with the flavors of cinnamon, cayenne pepper and burnt sugar caramel blending perfectly together.
Beyond just the food, Mi Corizon offers a variety of specials to keep people coming back. On Tuesdays, they offer their two tacos and a shot of tequila or margarita special for $14. On Wednesdays, they serve a mezcal margarita for $8 and two vegan tostadas for $8. And Thursdays, customers pay happy hour prices all night long.
The restaurant also features a new bottomless brunch menu featuring Mexican classics such as the omelet de rajas, French toast made with Mexican bolillo bread dipped in a creamy cinnamon batter, huevos rancheros and chilaquiles. And besides serving micheladas and bloody marias, they also offer bottomless mimosas.
Next time you seek authentic and healthy Mexican cuisine, head over to Mi Corazon for both your taste buds and your heart. $$. 2609 Hyperion Ave., (323)522-3320 and 402 W Kenneth Road, (818)500-8100.
This review was also featured in the March 8, 2018 issue of the Beverly Press.