Please welcome Kimberly Vigier & her first contribution to CTbites. You'll see her experience at Don Carmelo's was a mixed bag, but taste for yourself and let us know what you think.
Nestled next to the East Norwalk train station sits Don Carmelo’s Mexican Grill, the next restaurant venture from area restauranteur, Luis Solis of Norwalk Pizza & Pasta. The restaurant touts itself as a Mexican grill and tequila bar, which drew a full crowd on a Thursday night with not an empty table to be found. The space itself is non-descript and with the exception of the mariachi band playing, one would never guess you were in a Mexican restaurant. Upon being seated, a basket of housemade warm multicolored tortilla chips was promptly presented with a trio of accompaniments: a traditional pico de gallo, a chipotle salsa and a salad of pickled vegetables. The pico was your basic chopped tomato, onion and cilantro mix with a bit too much acidity but was more balanced when enjoyed with a chip. While the flavor of the pickled vegetables was spot on, the mix of carrots, zucchini, onions and garlic would have felt more at home on an antipasti platter, perhaps an ode to the owner’s Italian roots? The chipotle salsa was smooth, smokey and packed a nice punch of heat, the most enjoyable of the three.