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When stepping into Hacienda Don Manuel in Brookfield, customers become immersed in the sights, sounds, and cuisine of Mexico.
Owner Edgar Romero opened Hacienda Don Manuel after the previous version of it closed down. Having experience working in restaurants, Mr Romero decided to take it over and upgrade everything. He gave it a new look, new menu, and new chef.
The changes proved to be just what the restaurant needed to thrive, and Mr Romero explains, “It is going really well.”
To the right of the entrance, a sunny yellow paint coats the walls of the dining area that seats 110. Beautiful pink flowers, as well as blue and white accents, are etched, popping out of every wall. The textured design is authentic to how homes are built in Mexico. This attention to detail took a month to complete and was all done by hand.
The Mexican flag hangs on the wall with pride along with multiple brilliantly colored sarapes shaped into bows. Sarapes are traditional shawls that people in Mexico usually wear when it gets cold. Numerous sombreros also hang from the walls, some plain tan and others in a variety of colors like red, white, and green.
Mr Romero said when people enter his restaurant, “You feel like you are in Mexico, especially when we have the mariachi band playing music.”
On Fridays and Saturdays, from 6 to 10 pm, mariachi music fills the room as the performers go table to table entertaining guests. The vibrant music can be enjoyed by all and offers a family-friendly environment.
The fun, happy atmosphere extends to the private party room, which groups of up to 90 people can reserve for all occasions, and into Hacienda Don Manuel’s bar, which features drinks on tap and an extensive collection of liquors for personalized drinks.
Happy Hour takes place Monday through Thursday from 3 to 6 pm. Customers can enjoy appetizer and drink specials at low prices. Two popular choices are the Pineapple Sangria and the Passionfruit Mojito.
The authentic Mexican food is always fresh and homemade. Hacienda Don Manuel recently added four new appetizers and five new main dishes to its menu.
A Sample of the Menu:
Appetizers: A top-selling item that customers crave is the fresh guacamole, made with avocado, cilantro, tomato, onion, and jalapeno peppers and prepared tableside.
Soup: The Sopa Negra is Hacienda Don Manuel’s delicious black bean soup for $6.95.
Salad: A standout dish is the Ensalada Bandera. It includes fresh lettuce, avocado, tomato, and Oaxaca cheese.
Vegetarian: With a specific portion of the menu catering to vegetarian options, the Grande Burrito is a popular item for all to enjoy. The mixed vegetable burrito is made up of bell peppers, guacamole, onion, green beans, cauliflower, broccoli, beans, and white cheese for $11.95.
Kids’ Menu: Hacienda Don Manuel offers a menu for children that includes of variety of meals like cheese quesadillas, chicken quesadillas, and chicken fingers.
Entrees: All “Traditionales” dishes are served with Mexican rice and beans. Among the different options are the chimichangas, $12.95, consisting of deep-fried flour tortillas stuffed with beef or chicken and garnished with guacamole and sour cream.
Steak: One of the new items on the menu is Tampiquena, which is a grilled New York strip steak topped with onion, poblano peppers, slices of avocado, red sauce, with a side of chicken mole enchilada.
Seafood: The Acapulco is jumbo shrimp wrapped in bacon and stuffed with white cheese, $17.95.
Dessert: Some dessert highlights include crunchy churros, homemade flan, and fried ice cream; each is only $5.95.
Specials: The food and drink specials change every other week.
Hacienda Don Manuel, 265 Federal Road in Brookfield, near Costco, is open Sunday through Thursday, from 11 am to 10 pm, and Friday through Saturday, from 11 am to 11:30 pm. Takeout, catering, and seating reservations are accepted by calling 203-740-0666. For more information, visit haciendadonmanuel-ct.com or its Facebook page, facebook.com/haciendact.