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Upper East Siders Can Get Their Goat at New Mexican Restaurant

UPPER EAST SIDE — In a neighborhood known for "Gossip Girl," Gucci and glamour, so humble a meat as goat rarely makes it onto area restaurants' menus.

That's changed, however, with the recent opening of El Aguila — a chainlet offering goat-filled burritos and tacos, as well as other Mexican favorites.

El Aguila, located at 1215 Lexington Ave at East 82nd St., has a bill of fare also boasting tamales, tostadas, nachos and tortas — mayo-slathered bread stuffed with meat, refried beans, lettuce, tomato, onion and avocado.

Depending on the dish, customers can select from a wide variety of hearty fillings, including roast pork, beef, chicken, fish, chorizo and goat, among others.

Savory selections range in price from $1.25 for a tamale to $7.99 for a grilled steak quesadilla.

Sweet-tooth-sating picks include flan for $2.25 and tres leches cake for $3.25.

And horchata — a creamy-tasting beverage made of rice, cinnamon and vanilla — is available, alongside other fruity aguas frescas.

Yulessa Rivera, a manager of another El Aguila who works in close contact with the company's owners, said that dressings such as salsas, pico de gallo, and corn relish are all unique to the restaurants and not pre-purchased.

"We try to make as many products as possible," she said. "So it's very fresh."

El Aguila also imports onions and cilantro from Mexico to give as authentic a taste as possible, she said.

The Upper East Side outpost opened in February, making it the fourth El Aguila in the New York City metro area, she said.

There are two El Aguilas in Spanish Harlem — at 1634 Lexington Ave. at East 103rd Street, and at 137 E. 116th St.

The flagship is located in Passaic, N.J. 

The company also has its own tortilla factory in New Jersey, and ships them to restaurants throughout the Tri-State area.

Rivera said El Aguila plans on opening more stores in the city.