February 07, 2020

Inside Hyde Park's Mesa Loca, a Modern Mexican Eatery in the Former Cock & Bull Space

Columbus-based Peerless Management Group remodeled the former Cock & Bull on Hyde Park Square in late 2019 and opened something way cool: Mesa Loca. Peerless owns Galla Park, a meat-and-potatoes-style American restaurant at The Banks, as well as a couple of nightclubs and restaurants in the state capital. For the company’s first suburban restaurant, they went with what had been high on their wish list — creative Mexican cuisine served in a lively, convivial setting on that prominent corner. You won’t find fajitas, burritos or quesadillas on the menu, and the cocktails are all made from fresh juices. They have tacos, to be sure, but otherwise the menu holds a few surprises. While the “apertivos” (appetizers) menu section is minimal, beyond that you’ll find plenty to consider in sections describing soups and salads, ceviche, meats, veggies, seafood, tacos and a house specialty called molcajete. Molcajete is named after the large, black stone bowl in which a meat- or seafood-based concoction is served. The restaurant is expansive, with a bustling front dining room that also contains a wraparound bar and a smaller back dining room. Colorful wall murals enhance the experience. The patio out front will seat dozens more in finer weather and there’s a smaller enclosed courtyard out back that looks promising. Until those outdoor spaces open, you’ll have to sit inside in what is already the new “it” place in Hyde Park. Read a full review at citybeat.com.
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Entrance of Mesa Loca
Entrance of Mesa Loca
The restaurant is expansive, with a bustling front dining room that also contains a wraparound bar and a smaller back dining room.
The restaurant is expansive, with a bustling front dining room that also contains a wraparound bar and a smaller back dining room.
A spread of menu items available at Mesa Loca
A spread of menu items available at Mesa Loca
Mesa Margarita: Viva Agave! tequila, triple sec, Gran Gala, agave nectar, fresh squeezed lime ($10)
Mesa Margarita: Viva Agave! tequila, triple sec, Gran Gala, agave nectar, fresh squeezed lime ($10)
Dining space
Dining space
Elote: charred sweet corn, chili tajin, aioli, cotija, lime ($8)
Elote: charred sweet corn, chili tajin, aioli, cotija, lime ($8)
Mesa Margaritas and sangrías
Mesa Margaritas and sangrías
Bar
Bar
Crab-stuffed peppers: piquillo peppers, lump crab, panko, manchego, spiced pepitas ($14) and a Mesa Margarita
Crab-stuffed peppers: piquillo peppers, lump crab, panko, manchego, spiced pepitas ($14) and a Mesa Margarita
Colorful wall murals enhance the experience
Colorful wall murals enhance the experience