Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Spuds and His Mother Take the Train to Olvera Street
Spuds and I went to Olvera Street on Saturday night just as the Chinese New Year’s celebrations were winding down. Luz Del Dia and La Golondrina both had long lines so we tried El Paseo, just to say we had. I’ve heard all the hubbub about the dastardly Americanization of Mexican food, but Spuds and I both like fajitas. There, I said it. Plus, they are lower than fat than many other Mexican items, if you use corn tortillas and go easy on the guacamole. I’m also fond of tamale pie but won’t digress that far.
The beef in El Paseo’s fajitas was sort of chunky and tough and misshapen. I was pleased that the onions were cooked to a clear state and the accompanying peppers were nice. They were out of handmade tortillas (out of hands, I guess) which was rather a crushing blow. A plate with the requisite mediocre rice and bean (w/ cheese) and guacamole, all together on the same plate after more than a few minutes under a heat lamp, didn’t perk things up. Note to self: mounding guacamole on a nest of shredded lettuce does not protect it from exposure to heat.
So, edible but mediocre but we ate inside in an ancient (for Los Angeles) basement dining room and a long communal table and it was one of the most incredibly monastic dining experiences I have ever had. Truly a gorgeous space, well worth not enjoying a meal in.
After dinner I succumbed to the lure of Mexican candy and bought about a dozen pieces, few of which made it home. Even Spuds loved it and we both noticed how pure it tastes next to some of the other sweets I hate to admit we all consume all too frequently. We picked up a couple of different cajeta bars, a few different coconut candies (including the one with the pink and green stripe which is just TOO sweet), pumpkin and sweet potato which are remarkable and I am not stupid enough to believe that eating a small piece of pumpkin with about a pound of sugar BOILED INTO is righteous. But, hey.
Posted by Layne at 1:18 PM