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California-Style Mexican Food Coming to Canal Street

By Lisha Arino | May 7, 2014 11:26am
 A few of the menu items that will be available when Cochinita Dos, a new Mexican restaurant in the Lower East Side, opens on May 9 at 49 Canal Street.
Cochinita Dos
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LOWER EAST SIDE — Canal Street is getting a taste of California-style Mexican.

Cochinita Dos, which will focus on fresh dishes and eco-friendly practices, is launching Friday at 49 Canal St. between Orchard and Ludlow streets.

The restaurant is an expansion of owner Adam Frank's original Cochinita restaurant in Clinton Hill, which opened in 2011.

Like its Brooklyn counterpart, Cochinita Dos will serve a hybrid of California and regional Mexican cooking.

The restaurant is named for "cochinita," a succulent Yucatan pork dish that is marinated overnight with bitter oranges and spices before it is cooked for several hours. The fish taco recipe is from Baja California, Frank said.

The menu includes tacos priced at $4.50 each, $9 burritos and $10 plates with seven different items. It also features sides such as chips, salad, and rice and beans, as well as desserts and homemade agua fresca drinks with flavors including limeade and hibiscus.

“We don’t have a freezer so everything’s really fresh,” Frank said. “We make everything from the menu almost every day.”

The restaurant's "California influence" extends to its eco-friendly goals, Frank said. He plans to compost or recycle 85 percent of Cochinita Dos' waste, buy meat from animals raised humanely with no hormones and use natural cleaning supplies. 

"We're just trying to be responsible and have a good product and be a good business," Frank said.

Cochinita Dos will seat 30 people at family-style tables in a simple light blue interior that will “allow the food and humans to shine,” Frank said.

Frank added that he hopes the restaurant will become a spot for locals to gather.

“I see us as a neighborhood hangout,” he said.

Cochinita Dos will be open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. seven days a week starting May 9. The restaurant will also accept delivery orders through its website, its Facebook page or its app, which is available on iTunes and Google Play.