There’s something about the space in the Lincoln Court Shopping Center (the one with Giant; why don’t they just name these places after the flagship store?) that’s on the right side, across from the QVC outlet. Something that says “this must be a Mexican fast-casual restaurant”. Seriously, is it written in the real estate contract? As far back as I can remember, this has been a Desert Moon or a Mesa Grill or some such semi-chain creation.
It’s unclear whether the latest tenant, Rosalita’s Fresh Mexican, has any connection to these other places, but it appears not. This is an independent, single-location place, started by a few local (non-Mexican, as far as I can tell) guys, although it does have the trappings of a chain in the making. For now, at least, it’s not.
Enough of all that, however. Let’s get to the food. According to Rosalita’s website, they have been “generating buzz for their pork”, so we tried some soft tacos ($6.95) with their 10-hour smoked carnitas (which are also marinated in spices for 24 hours) and their signature salsa, a smoked jalapeno and tomato number. Each taco also included pico de gallo and some shredded lettuce, and there was a side of tortilla chips.
This pork and smoked jalapeno combination is flat-out AWESOME. Having eaten quite a bit of this type of Mexican fare (remember Zuzu? I was a regular), this is on another level. It’s an amazing fusion of Carolina barbecue and Mexican food. You just don’t find flavor pairings this good for less than $7.
We also tried the chicken enchiladas with peanut-chipotle salsa ($8.95), another one of Rosalita’s sauce creations. This was solid, though not nearly as interesting as the tacos, and probably more in line with what one might get at any of these fast-casual burrito joints.
We got take-out, but there is ample seating indoors and out, plenty of room for a quick family meal. Orders are taken at the counter, then food is brought out to tables. Both employees I interacted with were upbeat and cordial.
Mexican lovers now have lots of choices in the area (Buena Vista, Xilantro), but Rosalita’s fits the bill when speed is in order, and it’s definitely worth a try to get a taste of that smoked jalapeno salsa. (All of their sauces can be ordered in bulk, btw.)
Rosalita’s Fresh Mexican
215 Lancaster Avenue
Lincoln Court Shopping Center,
Malvern PA 19355
(image from Rosalita’s Facebook page)