On the Halloween’s eve, five hungry souls descended upon Morrisville’s Viva DF Tequila and Taco Bar, but instead of fright that night, the group I was with only found culinary delights in the urban and sophisticated space. The new-ish place–open for only about four months– showed potential that night despite its obscured location in the rather non-descript strip mall off Davis Drive. Our waiter informed us after we settled in that Viva DF is the sister restaurant to Cary’s Totopos and its industry experience showed throughout the night.
Cocktails at Viva reflect its vibrant, off-kilter personality. As a special homage to Halloween that night, Viva offered a special version of its Mercado cocktail made with dry ice and bubbled so much that it made our entire party laugh out loud at its outlandishness. The bartenders at Viva DF make the margaritas strong and serve them in slanted rocks glasses, a nice nod to the whimsical nature of the restaurant.
The menu at Viva DF is an exhibition of the fare of Mexico City (of which Viva DF derives its namesake from, the “federal district” or better known as the distrito federal) which includes a varied selection of familiar menu items like street tacos, enchiladas and fajitas. The enchiladas suizas stuffed with shredded bits of chicken tinga that I ordered that night was particularly piquant in flavor and came with ample sides of rice and beans. The street tacos and chimichanga were equally as appealing in presentation and satisfying in flavor to the others in my party. Most of the entrees ring in between $ 10 and $ 15 and are fairly-priced given their quality and portion size.
Service at Viva DF was extremely hospitable and extremely eager to please. If there is any detraction, the Mexican restaurant doesn’t achieve the offbeat, unique atmosphere of a similar restaurant in the Triangle, Gonza Tacos y Tequila that it may be trying to emulate, though that may be more attributed to the lackluster location than anything else. On a Friday night at 9 p.m., there were only three other tables occupied in the dining room.
Regardless, those in the area should definitely make a stop into Viva DF tequila and taco bar for fare that’s well above par of the other rather bland and ubiquitous “Mexican” restaurants that seem to populate the Cary and Morrisville areas.
VIVA DF Taco and Tequila Bar | 4075 Davis Drive Morrisville NC 27560 | 919.467.2627