About

Maria's tortillas, Brian's recipes, so many delicious beverages and the perfect pre-movie snacks!

Cantina Leña is a bright new spot in the downtown Seattle dining scene. Flavors of Yucatan cuisine inspired the concise and vibrant menu which features smoked meats, charred veggies and zesty ceviche. We hope you develop an addiction to the crunchy pork carnitas nachos or the torta with smoked meat & pickled pineapple. At lunch time there is quick tempo counter & bar service and in the evening a full service bar and dining room.

Inspired By Mexico

The rustic cooking of Mexico is an influence on the Cantina Leña menu but our chefs have definitely added their own flair and great Northwest ingredients. Our masa is ground in house by volcanic stones to produce toothsome tortillas.

Two must try dishes are Brian’s smoked beef quesadilla and charred broccoli salad. Our bar has some tasty concoctions waiting for you too with great tequila, slushies and modern takes on horchata.

Cantina Leña is located at the corner of 5th and Lenora on the street level of The Martin residential building. It is a lively space of vibrant colors. tile, wood beams, and industrial infrastructure surrounded by 20 foot tall windows. A big menu board welcomes you and gets your mouth watering. Food is easily prepared for to -go orders , the kitchen line is right behind the counter so you can watch the cooks assemble your delicious meal or settle in to enjoy the cantina vibe.We are happy to be next door neighbors with the fantastically renovated Cinerama and hope you stop in on your way to the movies.


STARTERS

  • 13. THREE AMIGOS: fresh made chips and dips: newaukum farms pumpkin, chipotle, & smashed pinto bean dip & queso fundido
  • 5. CHIPS & SALSA: heirloom tomato molcajete rojo
  • 8. GUACAMOLE & CHIPS: smashed avacados, lime
  • 14. CEVICHE: yellowtail, yuzu kosho, giant radish, lime aioli, tostada
  • 12. ZACH'S VEGGIE QUESADILLA: squash, arugula, smoked aioli, black beans, oazaca cheese
  • 12. SMOKED BEEF QUESADILLA: pulled beef, kimchi, white cheddar, tapatio sour cream
  • 14. NACHOS: crispy pork carnitas, green chiles, pickled onion, fundido
    • 3. ~Cadillac your nachos: add tapatio sour cream, black beans and guacamole
  • 13. CARNE ASADA FRIES: fundido, cantina steak, pickled peppers, queso fresco

SALADS & SOUP

  • 11. CHARRED BROCCOLI: pickled onion, smoked cotija dressing, corn nuts
  • 12. PROSSER FARM SALAD: whatever is fresh from our farm in Prosser Washington
  • 12. VERDE PORK POZOLE: smoked pork, hominy, tomatillo, coriander crème, lime

SANDWICHES

served with tortilla chips

  • 11. CHORIZO WRAP: shaved cabbage, pickled onion, lime mayo, jalapeno
  • 11. TORTA: smoked turkey, ham, pickled pineapple, gold onions, smoked aioli
  • 11. BLACK BEAN WRAP: cabbage, jicama, cucumber, radish, lime mayo, jalapeno

CANTINA TACO PLATES

build your own with fresh tortillas brown rice and choice of side

  • 15. ACHIOTE PORK SHOULDER: sour orange, pickled onion
  • 18. CANTINA STEAK: roasted garlic, charred tomato sauce, aji amarillo cream
  • 15. CRISPY LING COD: charred pina & jicama salsa, spicy green mayo
  • 15. SPICY SLOW ROASTED CHICKEN: serrano chiles, lime, cilantro
  • SALSAS: guajillo ~chipotle & charred serrano chile with cilantro and sour orange

SIDES

  • 4. BLACK BEANS: guajillo chile, cocoa nib
  • 4. PINTO BEANS: olive oil, garlic, chive
  • 2. BROWN RICE: butter, chiles, scallion
  • 4. JOSH'S ROOTS: carrot, parsnip, agave, espelette
  • 2. MARIA'S TORTILLAS (3)

DESSERTS

  • 2.50 CHOCADA BROWNIE: chocolate, coconut, walnut
  • 5.25 CHURROS (3)
    • 1.25ancho chocolate
    • 1.25piña hibiscus marmalade
    • 1.25mezcal caramel
  • 12.50 FIESTA CHURROS: five churros & all three dippy sauces

Margaritas

  • 10. house: zapopan reposado, on the rocks, salt
  • 9. frozen: casa pacific blanco, salt, brain freeze
  • 10.50 serrano-hibiscus: house infused jimador blanco, salt
  • 11.50 pineapple: uno mas añejo, fresh piña, campari, cava
  • 18. plantation punch: dark & light rum, hibiscus, served in a pinapple

cocktails

  • 9.50 paloma: grapefruit "jarvitos" soda, cabrito blanco, lime, salt
  • 12. anejo fashioned: uno mas anejo, chery-vanilla bitters, curacao
  • 8.50 michelada: dos equis, citrus, tapatio, clamato
  • 10. summer sangria: riesling & fruit, apricot brandy, sparkling rose
  • 12. oaxaca sour: fidencio clasico, lime, egg white, malbec float

NON-ALCOHOLIC

house made refreshments

  • 5.25 "jarvitos" grapefruit soda
  • 2.75 jarritos: mandrarin, tamarind, strawberry, pineapple, lime, agave, mineral water
  • 3.25 classic horchata: almond, rice, cinnamon (dairy free)
  • 4.25 medianoche: half starbucks cold brew coffee, half classic horchata
  • 4.25 agua fresca del dia
  • 3.25 hibiscus iced tea or classic iced tea
  • 3.25 limeade

Comida

  • 9. Breakfast Burritos: scrambled eggs, crispy potatoes, fundido, pinto beans, tapatio sour cream
    • 2.add smoked pork, pulled beef or spicy chicken, chorizo, braised kale
  • 5.25 Churros: cinnamon and sugar dusted
    • 1.25guava and pineapple marmalade
    • 1.25ancho chocolate sauce
    • 1.25cointreau caramel
  • Weekend brunch specials

Bebidas

  • 9. Bloodies
    • maria zapopan reposado
    • mario fidencsio clasico mezcal
    • mary housemade lemon vodka
  • 8. Mimosas
    • orange or grapefruit
    • agua fresca del dia
  • 8. Punches
    • lena "leche": presidente brandy, licor 43, horchata
    • planter's: smith & cross, pina, oj, real grenadine

Comida

Served Monday-Friday from 3-6pm

  • 2. FISH TACOS: crispy ling cod, guacamole, pickled red onion
  • 7. QUESADILLA: slow roasted spicy serrano chicken, cheddar cheese, charred scallion
  • 8. BLACK BEAN NACHOS: fundido and melted jack, black beans, pickled onion, cilantro
  • 5. CRISPY HOG EARS: house made hinklehatz hot sauce, lime
  • 4. GREEN CHILE FUNDIDO: fresh made chips
  • 3. CHIPS & SALSA: heirloom tomato molcajete rojo

Bebidas

  • 6. Slushy Margarita
  • 6. Shot of lunazul reposado tequila: sangrita chaser
  • 5. Bottle of ninkasi spring reign
  • 5.25 Pint of Draft Beer
  • 2. Agua Fresca del Dia
    • 6.+reposado tequila
    • 6.+vodka
    • 5.+cava

Chef Bio

Brian (Mad Dog) Madayag - Chef, Cantina Leña

Brian began his career with Tom Douglas Seattle Kitchen as line cook at Seatown Seabar and Palace Kitchen.  He was then promoted as the sous chef/lead bartender at Cantina Leña, before being promoted to become Chef of Cantina Leña.

Brian grew up in Edmonds, Washington, and he says his culinary destiny was sealed when he got his first kitchen job at Kojo Japan in the Alderwood Mall food court.  After working a variety of front and back of house positions at other restaurants, he decided on cooking as a career and enrolled in the Seattle Culinary Academy at Seattle Central College.

After finishing school, Brian honed his skills at Tom Douglas Seattle Kitchen restaurants.  He says that his admiration for Chefs Adrienne Chamberlain and Nate Crave at Seatown Seabar inspired him to pursue his own goal of becoming a chef.  Under Chef Dezi Bonow at Palace Kitchen, Brian absorbed Dezi’s flair for combining classic style with modern ideas.  But Brian says it was under Chef Walczyk at Cantina Leña that he learned how to lead a team of excellent cooks while creating the most delicious food possible. 

Brian still lives in Edmonds with his beautiful wife Crystal and dog, Lola (no relation to the TDR restaurant). In his free time he loves fishing, diving, motorsports, and kumite.