I am a lover of all things Mexican food, especially tacos. So when I went out to try Fogata Brava, I had my expectations high and my stomach rumbling. Fogata Brava is situated in a quiet shopping center off of Old Wake Forest Road in North Raleigh. The space itself is bright and fun, and much larger than I expected it to be. We were seated in a comfortable booth, where Cervando, one of the owners, greeted us. Cervando told us a little bit about himself and the restaurant. Fogata Brava has been open for about three months and the menu is inspired by traditional Mexican dishes, some with a little bit of a twist.
Our meal started with a basket of chips and salsa, which I have to say, is one of my favorite parts of going to a Mexican restaurant. I know it is simple, but it’s such a tasty and refreshing way to start your meal! As a queso connoisseur, I had to force myself to pass up the Queso Picante for something new and different. Instead we went with the Cocitas Ahogadas ($8) as an appetizer. This dish consisted of two fried empanadas stuffed with chicken and beef and topped with Queso Picante and Salsa Cruda. We were a little worried that $8 was a lot for just two empanadas, but when the dish came we understood why. The empanadas were a very generous size and they were incredibly flavorful and satisfying. The Queso Picante added a little bit of a kick, making it just the right amount of spicy.
I also decided to give the Sangria ($8) a try, which was made from a Grenache/Syrah wine, Tequila, Triple Sec, Lime Juice, and seasonal fruit. The flavors of the Sangria went perfectly with my meal, and I would definitely order it again. For my entrée I decided to go with the Tinga de Pollo Tacos ($11). The tacos had shredded chicken, shredded lettuce, crema Mexicana, radishes, and Queso Fresco. They were also served in homemade soft corn shells. The chicken was extremely tender and flavorful, as were the toppings. I think next time I would swap out the Queso Fresco for the Queso Picante, just to add a little spice, but if you aren’t a spice lover you will love these. I also had my tacos with a side of Yuca fries, which were served with the most amazing Chipotle Aioli.
My boyfriend decided to go with his usual Arroz con Pollo, which he loved. The serving didn’t look that big when they brought it out, but he was stuffed by the time he finished eating. Cervando said we couldn’t leave without trying the Flan de Cajeta ($6), so of course we had to give it a try. My boyfriend and I both have a huge sweet tooth, so we loved the sweet caramel flavors of the flan. It was also incredibly creamy, rather than super gelatin-y like some flans can be. It was the perfect sweet treat to end our meal, and I would definitely recommend it.
Overall I had a great experience at Fogata Brava. I really enjoyed the tasty twist that Cervando and the team put on traditional Mexican dishes. While everything was delicious, I would highly recommend both the Cocitas Ahogadas and the Flan de Cajeta. I can’t wait to come back to try more of what Fogata Brava has to offer.
Note: From time to time we’re invited out to an event or to try a restaurant or certain products. This meal or items are usually comped, as this was. We’re under no obligation to write a positive review or any review at all when we’re invited out to try a place. Every review you see on our site will be an honest review of the place whether or not the restaurant provided us with the meal at their cost.
Melissa Guido is currently a dietetic intern in the Triangle area. She studied nutrition at NC State and Meredith College. Her favorite part about nutrition is showing people that healthy food can be exciting and delicious. Melissa loves traveling and learning about how food fits into different cultures. In her free time she loves trying new restaurants, cooking, and obsessing over her dogs. Follow her on Instagram @made2order and at www.madeorder.wordpress.com.