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Friday, January 22, 2010

Flying Fajita Sistas, Glebe

"Real Mexican..." says Suze, as we peruse the menu outside Flying Fajita Sistas. "Will there be cheese?"

Table setting

We are a group of eight tonight, waiting with the rest of Sydney, it seems, for the second sitting of 8.30pm on a Tuesday night. The reason for the strict turnover is simple - Tuesday offers $3 tacos and $3 tequila shots. No wonder everyone looks so happy to wait.

Wine glasses and water tumblers

We troop upstairs to a room that is steadily filling with diners, a Mexican flag proudly pinned to one wall, trinkets, posters and statues dotting the others. Staff dart about in brightly coloured and traditional-looking embroidered smocks. The wooden floor, wooden tables and wooden chairs do little to absorb the increasing chatter of the assembled crowd.

Strawberry and white wine sangria $19.50 (1 litre)
Brandy-soaked strawberries, white wine,
pineapple juice and dry ginger ale

Despite the lure of $3 tequila shots, we succumb to a jug of strawberry and white wine sangria instead, a lighter version than the usual red wine combination. It's sweet and fruity, although not particularly boozy, and the pineapple juice and dry ginger ale adds a tropical flavour.

Sangria time!

Taco Tuesday platter menu

Groups of four are more do well with the Taco Tuesday platter, offering four tacos for $12 with free sides of guacamole, salsa and sour cream.

Trio of pepian, queso fundido and frijoles $14.90
with blue, white and yellow corn totopas

We start with dips and chips. Pepian is a Mexican version of pesto, a nutty green paste made from pumpkins and fresh green chile. Frijoles is a dense bean dip made from pulverised pinto beans and spices. The crowd favourite is the queso fundido, a molten mass of oozing cheese on a roasted tomato and ancho chile salsa that is sweet and smoky.

Dipping into the queso fundido

There's plenty of crunch action from the accompanying totopas, thick tortilla chips that are bubbled and blistered on the surface. Suze just smiles and helps herself to more chips and melted cheese.

Tacos with sweet chipotle chicken

The tacos arrive with a different filling on each plate. Sweet chipotle chicken is quite chunky in texture, although some taste a little dry in parts. Some saucing action from our complementary sides of guacamole, sour cream and salsa works wonders, although the salsa is so runny the entire ramekin needs to be picked up and poured over the intended taco.

Salsa, guacamole and sour cream

Frijoles tacos

Frijoles tacos are probably my least favourite of the evening, the bean puree having a mealy texture. I find it's helped by including the garnish of salad, a fresh combination of mixed lettuce and matchstick-sized batons of crunchy radish.

Ropa vieja tacos

The beef tacos hold shreds of flank steak, a Cuban dish known as ropa vieja. The beef is tender and well-flavoured.

Achiote pulled pork tacos

Silken strands of Achiote pulled pork tacos are melt-in-the-mouth good. The fine shreds of soft pork are probably the best match for the soft flour tacos, with no excessive chewing required.


We scoop up the rest of our dips with an extra serve of totopas, the curls proving perfect receptacles, and the thickness of the tortilla chips meaning they resist sogginess.

The Wall of Pain

Mexican food doesn't have to involve chilli but those in search of an endorphin range are well catered for. The Wall of Pain is a series of three spice racks filled with a mind-boggling collection of chilli sauces. The top shelf comes with a warning to "please seek advice from staff" before selecting.

Rectum Ripper, Devil's B!tch and Salsa Chipotle

I bring three bottles of hot sauce back upstairs - the Devil is the thinnest in consistency but hottest of the three. Salsa chipotle is smoky with a surpising afterkick. The Rectum Ripper didn't live up to its name, although thankfully so.

Mexican movie poster: El Fanfarron (1943)

Mexican statue

With a large group of sweet-toothed food bloggers in tow, we take great delight in telling our waitress "we'll have one of everything on the dessert menu".

Chocolate mousse cake $12.90
Chocolate genoise brushed with Kahlua, topped with a rich
Mexican mousse, finished with espresso anglaise and creme

Chocolate mousse cake is light and fluffy, a marshmallow-like cloud on a sponge base doused with Kahlua. It's the kind of dessert I savour slowly with a spoon, and incredibly addictive.

Platano frito $11.90
Fried banana finished with fresh coconut creme,
toasted coconut and white chocolate

Not so addictive is the banana fritter. The plantain banana is a curious beast, starchy and mealy and almost bland to our unaccustomed palates. The batter is thin and crunchy although a little oily in aftertaste. Even after eight of us have sampled it, there's still two-thirds left behind.

Banana and chocolate chimichanga $13.90
A flour tortilla wrapped around banana and chocolate then lightly fried.
Served with cinnamon anglaise, caramel sauce and a coconut creme

Am I the only person who sees the word chimichanga and pictures it dancing across the page? The chimichanga is a tightly folded package of slightly chewy flour tortilla. Sweet ripe banana slices are inside along with a puddle of melted chocolate.

Mexican bread pudding $13.90
Brioche, spiced pecans and chunks of Mexican chocolate
baked in a rich custard, finished with a cinnamon anglaise

Mexican bread pudding is quite firm in texture, almost like a dense cake. The spiced pecans don't offer the aromatics I'd expected, and whilst the chocolate offers some richness, I'm left wishing the bread pudding was eggier, with a softer consistency.

Orange, coffee and caramel brulee $12.90
Rich orange and coffee custard with caramelised sugar

Orange, coffee and caramel brulee is a combination that works surprisingly well. The fine granules of coffee suspended in the custard offset the sweetness of the dessert, and the flavour of orange and coffee somehow pair off with understated elegance. It's my favourite dessert of the evening.

We end up paying $30 a head for an evening of sangria, tacos and dessert. Do you need more convincing about the joy of Taco Tuesdays? Nah, Sistas are doing it for themselves.

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Flying Fajita Sistas on Urbanspoon

Flying Fajita Sistas
65 Glebe Point Rd, Glebe, Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9552 6522

Opening hours:
Open 7 days 6pm - late

Bookings for Taco Tuesdays strongly recommended.

Related Grab Your Fork posts:
Mexican - Guzman y Gomez, Newtown
Cooking class - Modern Mexican
31 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Helen (Grab Your Fork) on 1/22/2010 03:38:00 am


  • At 1/22/2010 4:04 am, Anonymous Hannah said…

    Is it bad that the whole time I was reading this I was thinking "I hope they have dessert, I hope they have dessert"? Hurrah, you did!

    I'm intrigued by the plantain dessert, as I've often had plantain chips here in the US and they're delicious - but definitely in a savoury way. I like the sound of the brulee, except without the orange please - just the coffee flavour would do me nicely :D

  • At 1/22/2010 6:33 am, Blogger joey@forkingaroundsydney said…

    Love the 'wall of pain'! LOL. And I'm so jealous you could say "We'll have one of each dessert please"!! :)

  • At 1/22/2010 7:21 am, Blogger Gastronomy Gal said…

    mmm rectum ripper. Well I'm very glad that it didn't live up to the hideously vivid description.

  • At 1/22/2010 8:13 am, Anonymous Chocolatesuze said…

    BWAHAHAHA I'm such an uncouth youth! But the real tacos were awesome loved the pulled pork!

  • At 1/22/2010 9:03 am, Blogger Stephcookie said…

    Taco Tuesday was great fun :) though I agree the bean was my least favourite due to its texture. How great is it ordering one of every dessert?! The banana was really not very good, which was a real pity.

  • At 1/22/2010 9:53 am, Anonymous Peter G @ Souvlaki For The Soul said…

    This place isn't far from me...thanks for the review Helen. I've always had a soft spot for tacos.

  • At 1/22/2010 10:44 am, Blogger Kate said…

    Looks like alot of fun. I think the good value and the sangria of course would entice even my non-foodie friends. Don't worry Helen Im still trying to get them interested. Im baking them endless treats. Hopefully they'll come round (even if it is out of guilt haha).

  • At 1/22/2010 10:48 am, Blogger A cupcake or two said…

    I still cant stop laughing at the name of the hot sauces. Ehehehe Rectum Ripper and Devil's B!tch. Imagine giving someone those chilli sauces as a gift. eheheh

  • At 1/22/2010 10:53 am, Anonymous Rose said…

    They used to have a tiny bottle of hot sauce on the tallest shelf, but I don't know if they still have it. It's the hottest sauce I've ever had... as in, a tiny drop at the edge of the fork makes me want to curl up in a foetal position and cry. I love Taco Tuesdays!

  • At 1/22/2010 10:58 am, Blogger arista said…

    Oh wow, the wall of pain! I'd be giving that a miss - I'm a big chilli wimp....

  • At 1/22/2010 11:18 am, Anonymous Prue said…

    This looks delicious and a great way to spend Tuesday night, let's face it is never a very exciting night.

    So verditc please, is it better than Beach Burito at Bondi? Or will that be the next Meixcan road test?

  • At 1/22/2010 11:28 am, Blogger OohLookBel said…

    $30 per head sounds like excellent value! Love that you were able to sample all the desserts, but hey, you only tried 3 of the whole wall of hot sauces?

  • At 1/22/2010 5:07 pm, Blogger Karen | Citrus and Candy said…

    It's def a good night when you can have tacos, Sangria and dessert for only 30!

    I admit I prefer crunchy tacos rather than soft one but omg how good was the pork?

  • At 1/23/2010 1:21 am, Anonymous J2Kfm said…

    Lovely post, snacking around, and drinking sangria all night long.

    Sistas' night out huh?

  • At 1/23/2010 1:35 am, Blogger Yas @ hungry.digital.elf. said…

    Aw too bad that I had to miss out on this one!!

    I was wondering why "chipotle" sounds so funny, and I realised that I just recently watched one of South Park episode LOL


  • At 1/23/2010 8:07 am, Blogger Rambling Tart said…

    Oh boy, oh boy, I simply have to make Mexican food this weekend. HAVE TO! Gorgeous photos - and I love all the dipping sauces. Mmm. :-)

  • At 1/23/2010 12:22 pm, Anonymous Jacq said…

    Such a fun night! Pork was my favourite too and this was my first time experiencing the "one of everything" desserts order and I loved it! Can't wait to do it again hehe

  • At 1/23/2010 12:39 pm, Anonymous D said…

    I've been meaning to try this for sometime as I love mexican food. Could you please explain what exactly "4 tacos pp x No. people (4 min)" means?

  • At 1/23/2010 10:28 pm, Anonymous grace said…

    ahah I like very much how almost half the post was about dessert
    moree dessert please:)


  • At 1/24/2010 3:47 pm, Blogger spicyicecream said…

    Thanks for coming to the first Taco Tuesday! Hopefully there will be more in the future. It was great fun, and such good value. I loved the pulled pork taco, glad I saved it for last.

  • At 1/24/2010 5:50 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Nice! Love all the desserts especially the orange, coffee and caramel brulee!!

  • At 1/24/2010 8:20 pm, Blogger Anna said…

    Hey Helen, thanks for sharing! Someone recommended I check this place out, but I have had some bad luck with mexican restaurants recently.. I might have to make a Tuesday date to visit the Flying Fajita Sistas now that I've read your post :)

  • At 1/24/2010 8:31 pm, Anonymous Trissa said…

    I'm a big taco fan and for 3 bucks a pop - well... I'm there next time!

  • At 1/25/2010 5:08 am, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Hi Hannah - I think I say that mantra whenever I go out for dinner - I hope we have dessert, I hope we have dessert. lol.

    The plantain bananas weren't a hit with us. I tried fresh plantain chips in NYC and found them quite mealy too. The orange and coffee brulee did work well together but then I think brulee makes everything taste good!

    Hi Joey - Isn't that every sweet tooth's dream statement? lol

    Hi Gastronomy Gal - I think a lot of super-hot chilli sauces tend to come with a sense of humour. But I'm glad it didn't live up to its name too :)

    Hi Chocolatesuze - Nothing wrong with loving cheese, I say! The pulled pork was divine.

    Hi Stephcookie - I was thinking that next time I'd skip the bean taco. And dessert gluttony is my favourite pasttime!

    Hi Peter G - Hope you have a soft spot for soft tacos. lol.

    Hi Kate - Oh I am sure you are slowly getting them to come around. I find that passion is often infectious, and often all it takes is a little contemplation for people to appreciate things. Good luck with your continued mission!

    Hi A Cupcake or Two - I should've noted the other hot sauce names - I tried to choose the ones that were least offensive! lol.

    Hi Rose - They still have it. Steph tried it on our way out. I wasn't game to sample it unadorned. lol. I like chilli but not that much!

    Hi Arista - Everyone starts out as a chilli wimp but with a little bit of practise, it's amazing how quickly you develop a growing addiction :)

    Hi Prue - I've never tried Beach Burrito, so yes, will have to add it to the growing list of places to try :) Thanks for the tip!

    Hi Belle - We were upstairs and the Wall of Pain was downstairs otherwise I would have grabbed more tables throughout the evening. lol. Next time, definitely!

    Hi Karen - I love a good value night out too. The pulled pork was delicious - must try to make my own sometime.

    Hi J2Kfm - A sista's night out indeed. We had a few guys drop out at the last minute but hey, more sangria for us! :)

    Hi Yas - A shame you couldn't make it and lol at South Park reference!

    Hi Rambling Tart - I'm the same. I find I always get cravings after reading food blogs. Dangerous stuff! Hope you satiated your Mexican cravings over the weekend :)

    Hi Jacq - The pulled pork was so good and yes, can't wait to order one of everything again too. lol

    Hi D - It does sound a little confusing but it means $12 gets you 4 tacos per person (minimum group size: four people). Hope this clarifies.

    Hi Grace - Ha, I hadn't noticed how much of the post was about dessert. lol.

    Hi Lisa - Ooh looking forward to the second Taco Tuesday! I saved the pulled pork taco last too. Great minds! lol

    Hi Ellie The orange, coffee and caramel brulee really suprised me as I hadn't expected to like it. Might have to look up some recipes :)

    Hi Ladybird - I think there's been a recent surge of interest in authentic Mexican restaurants locally. I haven't had a chance yet to try the rest of their menu but I have heard good things. Let me know what you think of Taco Tuesday if you make it there.

    Hi Trissa - The Taco Tuesday offer is a great bargain. Hope you get there soon :)

  • At 1/25/2010 3:00 pm, Blogger A Girl Called E said…

    ohh i love the ffs! they're a much better acronym than the usual ffs :)
    that cheesey dip had me at hello... and the pulled pork was amazing!
    i did end up feeling very ill the next day... hoping it wasn't related as the boy has just moved to glebe and i see myself attending taco tuesdays in a regular fashion!

    i also sampled $5 glebe thai recently... not to be sneezed at!

  • At 1/25/2010 10:46 pm, Anonymous Renita (the raw noodle) said…

    Ooh, I have heard about this place from many people and finally got to try it tonight! I was pleasantly surprised - since it's quite difficult to find decent Mexican food in Sydney. Luckily we had accidentally parked too far away. I needed the walk back after all that food!

    Quite busy for a Monday night too!

  • At 1/26/2010 9:26 am, Blogger hazchem said…

    wow, I'd heard VICIOUS rumour that the Sistas had gone from Glebe Point road, so I'm very glad that's wrong! Been here a few times and thoroughly enjoyed it! Also worth checking is Izote Mexican on King Street Newtown. As per Helen, you've succeeded in making me want whatever you've posted about for my next meal with your stunning photos and joyful writing. After this morning's reading I'm left wanting tacos and a hot pot. Thanks, I think.

  • At 1/27/2010 1:17 am, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Hi A Girl Called E - lol. I actually had the file of images named FFS and the same thing crossed my mind as well! The pulled pork was a highlight and hmmm hope your ills weren't connected! Great to see that Glebe still has a few cheap eats for those on a budget.

    Hi Renita - I never mind a good walk after dinner either. It does help with digestion, I'm sure! They were really busy on Tuesday but great to hear that Mondays are a brisk business too.

    Hi hazchem - Vicious indeed! Who starts these unfounded rumours? lol. Haven't been to Izote Mexican so thanks for the tip - will have to check it out. And aww, I'm not sure whether to be pleased or guilty that I've induced such cravings. Hope you manage to satiate both of them soon :)

  • At 1/29/2010 6:51 am, Blogger Hannah said…

    Absolutely, when doesn't crackly-burnt-sugar make things better? :)

    I actually had a packet of "puffed sweet plantain" last night (I don't know what they meant be puffed - they were chips), and they tasted more like banana than anything else. I'm guessing that similarity comes out more as they ripen to sweetness? I do like the *idea* of plantains...

  • At 1/29/2010 3:26 pm, Blogger thesweettoothfairy said…

    for real mexican, try Azteca's in Randwick.

  • At 2/02/2010 1:56 am, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Hi Hannah - Oh caramelisation is my favourite word!

    Puffed sweet plantains sound very intriguing. I think the sweetness of bananas does depend on their variety, although ripening always helps. I'm like you - often in love with the idea of things more than the things themselves!

    Hi thesweettoothfairy - Thanks for the tip. Will have to add it to the list!


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