El Jefe Menu Preview – Chef Joshua Moore
Something about the Highlands just makes you feel like one of the “cool –Kids” so right off the bat I was excited about El Jefe.
The restaurant has a lot of residential around so parking isn’t TOO crazy. The restaurant is super quaint, nice wood table dark décor; it really sets the mood (perfect for a date night). Lets not forget they were bumping some old school hip-hop, which ALWAYS gets me a little turned on to a restaurant immediately especially a Mexican style joint (brings me back to my 20s running around Denver with friends)
My #1 thing about a Mexican restaurant is the chips and salsa (often times a dead giveaway on what will follow) El Jefe brought out the most delicious warmed chips with a nice salt followed with 3 different beautifully flavored salsas (all of which were spicy) The Verde was by far my favorite with a little sweetness to it, it was hard to stop eating. We tried the ceviche, which was phenomenal. I have a lot of ceviche in my lifetime and none close to this. It was oily and fresh albacore tuna, with olives in it or “olive capers” if you will, giving it the perfect saltiness. Bravo guys, most people cant get the olive addition right but this was perfect.
Next up on my faves was the Roasted Poblano and Fig tacos… talk about an orgasm in your mouth. I was skeptical at fist but they came out creamy with a nice crunch of pepitas on top and the cake topper was the fresh tortillas. I have never had such good tortillas before. They had this nutty taste to them that was to die for (truth be told I ate one plain with nothing on it.
Another memorable dish was the chicken tostada. I didn’t know what to expect with this one as the description reads: Crispy skin chicken tostada- Verde mole, mustard greens, achiote, and cauliflower puree. I was half expecting something from a Paula Dean cookbook (or maybe the old witch herself to come out of the kitchen) but was pleasantly surprised by the plating and the delicateness of the dish. It could do without the chicken skin, it was a little unappetizing for the plate but the flavor of the puree was explosive. I was shocked there wasn’t dairy in it and wanted to order a whole soup bowl of it.
Needless to say, everything I tried was delicious and the new menu is a must try if you are in the area or passing through Denver. GET THE FIGS before they go out of season, thank me later.