December 4, 2012
Los Hermanos must have had the longest pre-opening hype build-up of any restaurant in Melbourne - they featured in The Age a full four months before they actually opened. They were beset by delays, with their opening day countdown extended a handful of times, to the point that I'd kind of given up on them by the time they actually got going.
Thankfully Troy remembered them, and suggested we hit them up for dinner on our way to music trivia at The Spotted Mallard (where my ridiculous inability to recognise the opening riff from Hand in Glove cost us victory). Anyway, back to Los Hermanos.
Tucked away in the backstreets of Brunswick, it's a small and stylish little place - there are seats for 25 or 30 people inside and a lovely courtyard out the back. The menu is up on the blackboard behind the beautiful wooden bar and, after staking our claim on a table out the back, we wandered in to place our orders. The menu doesn't have anything vegan by default but they're happy to adapt any of the vego dishes. I'd guess a lot (or all) of the dishes were gluten-free as well, but we didn't double check.
Cindy and I gave the veg menu a good workout, ordering both veggie tacos ($6 each), both veggie sopes ($6.50 each) and the gorditas ($6.50). The veggie tacos come in two flavours: de hongos (mushroom) and de calabazitas (zucchini). Both are complemented with corn, cheese and some coriander. The tortillas were excellent and the fillings fine, but these weren't super exciting.
In contrast, the sopes were top notch - they're cornflour-based tarts layered with a refried bean filling, salsa, cheese and your choice of mushroom or zucchini. Next time I think we'll just double down on these guys.
The final dish was the gorditas (there were two of these, but sometimes eating takes precedence over photos). They're little cornflour discs stuffed with beans and cheese. They were simple and delicious (especially once I'd got my hands on the hot sauce).
Los Hermanos is a handy addition to Brunswick - it's fast, cheap and vegan-friendly. The staff are lovely, the atmosphere pleasant and the food pretty good - it's not Melbourne's most exciting Mexican place, but its refreshing lack of pretension and the ability to get a table without waiting two hours make it worth checking out.
Something weird is going on - this place has been open for a few weeks now and no other bloggers have swung by to review it (although Two Munch did try, only to be foiled by Los Hermanos' ever-changing opening date).
Los Hermanos Mexican Taqueria
339 Victoria St, Brunswick
veg dishes $6-6.50
Accessibility: There's a ramped entry way to a reasonably spacious interior (although things get a bit crowded around the bar as people queue to order). I can't remember if there was a step out to the courtyard, but things are relatively flat and accessible once you're out there. We didn't visit the toilets.