Chef Mark McEwan samples the city’s best Mexican street corn, fresh from the harvest
It’s harvest time in Ontario, so we asked chef Mark McEwan to sample the city’s best known purveyors of Mexican street corn — or elotes. Whose kernels rule supreme? Read on to find out.
The perfect char
LA CARNITA, 130 EGLINTON AVE. E., $9.95 “The charring is right. The level of spice is right. The creaminess with the combo of sauce and cheese is really nice and well seasoned. I like the way they’ve kept the husk on the corn and wrapped it so you have a handle.”
EL POCHO ANTOJITOS BAR, 2 FOLLIS AVE., $6 “This is very tasty. I like the addition of the cilantro. It’s not too overpowering. The spice level is nice too,” says McEwan. “The piece of corn is smaller than the others, but it has been grilled well and the seasoning is good.”
MR. CORN FOOD TRUCK, MRCORN.CA, $7 “The spice is good, and I like the presentation of this one. The Parmesan cheese is an interesting choice. It’s different from the others. I’m missing the grill marks on it though, so it doesn’t have that roast feel to it.”
Creamy and dreamy
PLAYA CABANA, 111 DUPONT ST., $10 “The grilling is good, as is the creaminess. I like the other elements as well, from the cheese to the spice level, and it has a bit of lime on it. I prefer my corn to be small or large, and they’ve cropped off the ends of this one.”
Hot and spicy
SMOQUE N’ BONES, 869 QUEEN ST. W., $4.90 “It’s tasty. The grilling is good, and the smoked cheddar on top is quite rich and pretty powerful,” says McEwan. “I find the chipotle to be a little bit overwhelming. It’s spicy. The overall flavour is quite intense.”
Seasoned to perfection
EL CABALLITO, 220 KING ST. W., $5.97 “The moisture level is great, the spice is great, and the seasoning on this is exceptionally good. The only thing missing is the charring on the corn. But overall this is very good, and it’s nice and bright.”
FUN FACT When Mark McEwan ’cues up his corn on the cob while up at the cottage, he dresses it with shaved feta cheese.