Redefining the Toothsome Cemita

A mariachi band in full regalia escorted a parade of sombrero-wearers down Brooklyn's Smith Street last Friday evening, the lilting notes causing rosé drinkers at local wine bar JakeWalk to dash out the door and see what was afoot. I puzzled over what Mexican holiday it might be: El Día de los Muertos? No. El Grito! It was Mexican Independence Day, commemorating the revolt against Spanish rule in 1810.

In honor of the holiday, CitySpoonful has filed a full review of the Queens restaurant inspiring his June post "I fought the cemita, and the cemita won." Apparently he lost his "flip-in-and-out false front tooth" to a nonetheless "delicious queso cemita" (Mexican sandwich) at Taqueria Coatzingo. "Is density the sign of a good cemita?" he asked. "Or do I need a better dentist?"

The ensuing conversation has been fairly amusing: Mr Porkchop suspects the culprit was the need for "fresher bread." CitySpoonful replies, "To say the least -- though I think the dentist is not entirely blameless in this (lest the cemita get an unduly bad rap)." Sluggo1407 writes, "It looks delicious. I'll be sure to use some extra Fix-O-Dent before I go." Paulomet adds, "I once lost a tooth on a meatball parm at Paneantico on Bay Ridge. Good sandwich; bad dental work." Ba-da-bing!

Since one commenter, thegforceny, had complained of this thread, "I guess I'm not at the point yet where I find dentures stories interesting," CitySpoonful has now written a full review of the Jackson Heights taqueria in question. Apparently he has no hard feelings about his dental loss: The tooth-breaking cemita "was a delicious combination of flavors—unexpectedly mild and incredibly filling." A beer-hater in his party sipped her first michelada and loved it. A carnitas taco was successful; carne asada, less so (that is, according to CitySpoonful’s companions; he is a vegetarian).

City concludes that the taqueria’s cuisine is "hardly revelatory, but it is satisfying, inexpensive and a cut above average in a city where authentic Mexican food is a real find."

Taqueria Coatzingo [Jackson Heights]
76-05 Roosevelt Avenue, Queens
718-424-1977

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