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A spicy new taqueria and tequila bar opens in Tugun

If we were asked to name some of the world’s most-loved culinary combinations, tacos and tequila would be at the very top of that list. Well pretty much any Mexi-eats and all of the salty, mouthwatering margaritas we can get our hands on, to be specific.

Luckily, we have once again been blessed with our foodie dreams coming true thanks to a brand new Mexican eatery and tequila bar by the name of Caracara Cantina.

The newbie opened last week in the space that was formerly home to Hidden Wine Bar and Café and it’s the work of two people who gave us beloved Burleigh bar, Lockwood. Brenden Yeo and Zac Wright opened the secretive speakeasy almost exactly two years ago and now they’ve launched an equally impressive space into the Tugun dining scene.

Caracara is made up of two sections – the first, at the front, is a sweet shade of peach with white wooden tables and cactuses of all shapes and sizes strewn throughout. Perfection.

At the back, the tequila bar is moody and lowlit bringing the Lockwood vibes we know and love with quite the impressive array of tequila stacked on bar shelves. Both high tables and corner spaces are made for intimate, late-into-the-night chats soaked with quality tequila. The best kind.

The menu starts with tasty, flavour-packed dishes like Spiced Bean Dip, Padron Pepper, Ceviche and Charred Corn Cob and each is an absolute must-try.

Moving onto tacos, they’re the authentic, charred, melt-in-your-mouth variety with options like Spiced Pumpkin, Caracara beans, Pulled Pork or Fish and we recommend eating at least one of each, they’re all that good.

Of course, there’s a Giant Burrito and a Roasted Sweet Potato Salad made up of a whole, oven-baked sweet potato and topped with a fresh herb and chilli salad, corn salsa and salsa verde. Much delight.

As you’d imagine (having no doubt visited Lockwood many a time), the cocktail list is a special one with five margarita varieties including the Classic, Breakfast, Tommy’s, Chilli and Coconut.

There’s also a couple of tipples that include both tequila and lager and we’re obviously big fans of those.

If you’re keen to get involved in both tacos and tequila tastings, we suggest a Mexi-feast at the front (accompanied by a margie or two to warm you up), then an after-party in the back bar where the good times will definitely be rolling.

It’s happy days for Tugun Gold Coasters, Caracara is going to be an absolute hit.

LOCATION: 455 Golden Four Drive, Tugun
HOURS: Open 5pm until late Wednesday to Saturday and midday until late Sunday

Words and photos by Kirra Smith

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