As the dinner crowds have been reportedly rather large, with waits quoted at up to 2 hours, we opted to stop in for lunch on a Saturday afternoon…no wait, grabbed a comfortable table on the patio. I was in my happy place.
The decent-sized menu at Local Lime starts with a selection of freshly prepared, housemade salsas, then there’s a handful of small plates, a group of starters and snacks for the table to share. Among these small plates you’ll find made-to-order guacamole, queso, Mexican corn on the cob, cerviche, and nachos. Entrees include a variety of taco plates which include three tacos and two sides, with each plate ranging between $9-12. Conversely, diners may opt to order any of the eight taco varieties a la carte for $3.75 a pop (certainly not the cheapest tacos in town). A trio of salads and a small selection of plated dishes such as grilled salmon, enchiladas, and bacon-wrapped shrimp round out the entrée section.
Lastly came our taco plates. Tacos are fashioned in “street style” form, in other words, they tend to be on the smaller side and aren’t overflowing with fillings. Both corn or flour tortillas are offered, though each taco option comes with a suggested tortilla type. Let me just say that each taco we sampled was fantastic. It’s clear that a good amount of thought and attention went into each one’s creation. Each element feels balanced and perfectly proportioned. A few of our selections deserve special mention. First, the glorious pork belly taco. I’m not sure how, in my many years of taco-eating, I’ve never eaten a pork belly taco before, but now that I have, I’m not sure how I survived without it. The unctuous pork belly is grilled and slightly sweetened with a light coating of sauce. Accompanying this is a mango-papaya salsa, house hot sauce, and a few sprigs of cilantro. Quite frankly, it’s one of the best tacos I’ve ever eaten. Not far behind it was the chorizo taco which utilizes spicy, locally-produced ground sausage, chunks of sweet caramelized pineapple, and jack cheese. It’s a dazzling blend of sweet, spicy, and creamy. Another exceptional selection included the beer battered fish with crispy, delicate whitefish coated in a crunchy batter with shaved cabbage, pico de gallo, and red pepper crema. Lastly, we sampled the lovely pork carnitas made from locally raised pork, slow roasted until tender, with tangy pickled red onion, a sharp and salty cotija cheese, and more red pepper crema. Each taco was distinctly different from the next and the flavors never veered into monotony. If I had the stomach space to sample every taco on the menu, I would have, but luckily none of our selections turned out to be disappointing.
Local Lime is not so interested in creating an “authentic Mexican experience.” What they are interested in is using as much locally produced ingredients and incorporating them into their own take on Mexican cuisine. The results are impressive. If you don’t start seeing Local Lime on a number of upcoming Arkansas “best of” lists in the near future, it will be nothing short of a food crime.
17815 Chenal Pkwy
Sun-Thur: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m.
Fri-Sat: 11 a.m. — 12 a.m.
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