Esencia Urban Kitchen

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This Mexican cafe in East Lakeview specializes in made-from-scatch Mexican-inspired cooking for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Owners Celia Garcia, Rafael and Mauricio Castro are serving up dishes like Celia's grandmother's cream of corn soup to her sister's cochinita pibil, a slow-roasted pork made more than a dozen spices. Sweets are also a specialty here, including bread pudding, cookies, pies and Garcia's signature marshmallows, made in different flavors and shapes. It's BYOB and because the space is quite small—just 18 seats.