Original article here.
Cheeky has all the signs of a successful franchise in the making. The Latin-meets-sports bar concept boasts clever branding, affordable prices, friendly, efficient servers, and a fun atmosphere. But the fresh, spicy food is the most pleasant surprise.
Becky Stein, SpecialFor starters at Cheeky, try the grilled beef tenderloin skewers with bacon, onions, grilled peppers and melted cheese.
Suwanee to Cumming
The original Cheeky opened in Suwanee in 2007. The second Cheeky came to Cumming this year. Situated in the Avenue Forsyth shopping center on Peachtree Parkway, the spare contemporary look recalls some of the newer Taco Mac locations. That could be because Cheeky owner Jose Hevia is a longtime Taco Mac franchisee.
Tacos and more
Though inexpensive tacos are a major draw, starters, soups, salads, sandwiches, entrees and desserts round out the extended menu.
The housemade salsas, including mild guajillo and smoky morita, are excellent. Crunchy, salty totopo-style chips with red hot “table salsa” arrive free of charge. Limey guacamole ($6.50 or $1.99 as a side) is studded with a bright mix of jalapeño, tomato, cilantro and onion.
One of the best starters, grilled beef tenderloin skewers, alambres, have the delicate texture of Vietnamese shaking beef.
Topped with crispy bacon, grilled peppers, onions and melted cheese, the combo is perfect for folding into a soft flour tortilla with a bit of salsa.
Made locally by El Milagro, the airy all natural corn and flour tortillas served at Cheeky are a treat.
Order tacos al a carte ($2-$3) or in a taco trio ($10) with beans and rice.
Flavorful mojo-marinated pork is sweet and spicy with pineapple chipotle salsa. Buffalo chicken with hot wing sauce and crumbled blue cheese tastes like the real thing.
A recent special variation on the skirt steak taco was served with lump crab meat and hollandaise sauce.
Pour your own
Cheeky makes fresh lime mix and fruit purees for its margaritas, which can be mixed with a long list of top shelf blanco, reposado or añejo tequilas. The house ($6) is a bargain-priced blend of 100 percent blue agave tequila, lime mix, agave nectar and Gran Gala orange liqueur.
Cheeky also has a very entertaining beer program, with a couple of dozen offerings on draft, including Bell’s Two-Hearted, Dogfish Head 60 Minute and Stone Arrogant Bastard.
The “Pour Your Own Beer” draft system at several tables lets diners serve themselves using an iPad touch screen. And a draft wall with eight different taps uses a card system that allows beer drinkers to sample beers by the ounce or the pint, while a screen above the bar displays the favorites of the day.
Address, phone: 410 Peachtree Parkway, Suite 122, Cumming, 770-888-9940
Signature dish: Tacos
Entree prices: $8-$15
Hours: 11 a.m.-1 a.m. Mondays-Thursdays; 11 a.m.- 2 a.m. Fridays-Saturdays; 11 a.m.-midnight Sundays.
Credit cards: Yes