If you are missing the fantastic Latin cooking of Chef Anastacia Quinones, we are about to make you smile and hungry. It has been some time since AQ left her executive chef post at Komali when she took a position with Dallas school district as a culinary instructor. You may recall her other stints at Alma and Victor Tango. We truly enjoy what AQ does to a plate and now we have spotted her handiwork once again, this time off Legacy in Plano at Mexican Sugar.
AQ is responsible for the new menu revamp at Mexican Sugar as a consultant. We spoke with the chef today and she said, “I’ve known John Franke [corporate chef for concepts such as Mexican Sugar, Whiskey Cake and Velvet Taco] for about 6 years. I met him when I moved back from San Francisco six years ago. We’ve always tried to work together but other things always came up. When this opportunity came up, I couldn’t say no.”
The new menu is equally as spunky as Quinones, and includes interesting dishes such as a shrimp crab avocado cocktail served on an avocado gazpacho, lump crab enchiladas with a creamy poblano corn sauce, and gulf red snapper fillet over a hearts of palm citrus fennel salad.
“I needed to know where we were to know where to go. Everything was great so I didn’t do much. I did notice the lack of seafood and I’ve always felt that people misunderstand Mexican food thinking it’s hearty, and earthy and rich. And It can be. But it’s also very bright and fresh. When I was at Alma, I created an avocado soup dish that I loved. I wanted to do something similar. John and I added crab and citrus vinaigrette and it sang! It’s more of a crab and shrimp cocktail now.”
Those crab enchiladas are the first entry into enchiladas at Mexican Sugar. Quinones said, “John wanted to add an enchilada to the menu. I was hesitant but remembered the restaurants DNA. One of the bullets is “lighter, fresher, better. ” I thought, what if we added a lighter, better enchilada, something you couldn’t get anywhere else. I came up with the crab enchiladas with house salsa and poblano corn sauce. On my last day consulting at Mexican Sugar John wanted me to hang out and watch the execution of the new menu items as they rolled out the new menu for the first time. The new items sold great at lunch. I waited around for dinner. Once the rush came I couldn’t leave. I got stuck on the enchilada station. They got so busy, I had enchilada nightmares that night!”
Franke was equally as happy to finally work wit Quinones. He told craveDFW recently, “AQ has done an awesome job and I couldn’t have asked for a better chef to work with on creating these items. I have been inspired by her and her knowledge of Latin food. I couldn’t have done this new menu rollout without her”.
Now we know where to have dinner tonight.
Mexican Sugar is located at 7501 Lone Star in Plano.