cantina royale is definitely spicing things up in north williamsburg! the mexican inspired scratch-made food is fresh, delicious and definitely carries a serious bite. i was lucky enough to dine in a group of twelve so i tried about everything on the menu. you’ve got to start with the salsa sampler though. oddly enough, there were no tomatoes in sight. the salsas ranged from mild to crazy hot and each had its own signature ingredient that further infused the flavor. the tumbada was also noteworthy. you can’t really go wrong with creamy, savory rice when topped with meaty mussels, crab legs and tender calamari. keep an eye out for the chef / owner as well (he’s very cute, personable and doesn’t look a day over 22). you’ll know him when you see him and if you’re lucky, he’ll toss your table a few samples of his favorite tequilla.
the cuisine at cantina royale is expressive and bold. you’ll notice a similar theme in the ambiance of the space. they somehow manage to pull off industrial chic and still make you feel warm and cozy (or maybe that was the free-pour margarita speaking?). the breathtaking chandelier also helps set the tone when you walk in. wear heals, wear gym shoes; anything’s appropriate. but come with a big appetite and get ready to indulge in a serious flavor experience.