In Spanish, caliente means a range of descriptives including hot, warm, heated, spirited, urgent, and so on. The combination of these words signify another mix of descriptives like high temperature, spicy, piquant, alive, with love, affectionate, ardent, animated, energetic, and so on. On my recent post on Taco Local, I lamented the dearth of decent Mexican eats in Jakarta, especially having lived in Austin, Texas for a while…until I found Taco Local. But here’s another Mexican eatery to divert your taste buds!
Caliente distinctly reminds me of the famed and loved Chipotle Mexican chain restaurant evidenced by their casual setting, basic ingredients, condiments, as well as music (they had on The Killers when I was there–a good thing). Very affordably priced at the range of 35-50K per burrito, you can expect to spend in the range of 50-75K per person per meal. Their menu consists simply of taco salad, nachos, fries, create-your-own burritos and naked burritos (less provocatively called the cali bowl).
When I chatted with Andy and Kevin, partners and owners of Caliente, they expressed their appetite for bringing in fresh, authentic Mexican food at an affordable price. Compared to other Mexican restaurants around Jakarta, for the price and quality, I’d say Caliente is of good value. Inspired by the mass of Mexican eats in Los Angeles where they grew up, Andy and Kevin wanted to avail Mexican food for everyone, not just those who can afford lavishly priced food. And I say Amen to another Mexican eatery in town!
The ingredients are quite fresh, except we thought the beans could’ve been served less pasty and more bean-sy, if that makes sense. To clarify the unintelligibility of my last sentence, I thought the beans would’ve been better off being served as beans as they are and not turned into a paste. Another thing I’ll say is the servers could really be a tad more generous on their servings. I was so disheartened by how little each condiment was served. I promise you I’m not exaggerating. So being a brash and unlawful eater, I asked for more.
Here are my specific recommendations: the grilled beef burrito (had much more of a kick than the chicken) and the super nachos and super fries to share. Overall, I’d recommend this establishment, as I do Taco Local. I’ve had so many people ask me which of the two I prefer. I always say, they are different. It’s like comparing apples to oranges (okay, not quite). But I’ll tell you this: having 1 main order at Caliente is sure to fill you up more than ordering the same at Taco Local, and Caliente is more affordably priced. Either way, who cares what I think! Give Caliente a try and let me know what you think!
Carne Asada Beef / Fries / Jalapeño Peppers / Sour Cream / Guacamole / Cheddar
Choice of chicken or vegetarian / Crispy Tortilla Shell / Salad Mix / Signature Dressing
Choice of Grilled/Shredded Beef, Grilled Chicken, Vegetarian / Special Marinade / Guacamole / Corn Salsa / Cheddar / Sour Cream / Lime Cilantro Rice / Spicy Red Salsa / Flour Tortillas
Carne Asada Beef Nachos
Guacamole / Minced Beef / Sour Cream / Cheddar
Lippo Mall Kemang 3rd floor 03
Jl. P. Antasari no. 36
Jakarta Selatan 12150
Mon – Sun: 10 AM – 10 PM