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Tex-Mex is Back!

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Eleana's on corner of Zaragoza and Aquiles Seradan. Good salsas, great menu, cloth napkins. Beer and wine now and liquor permit applied for. Fits a niche that El Serape long abandoned. Open 7 days, 10-10.

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I noticed it yesterday and ate there last night. The salsas were GREAT. I'd add friendly service and very reasonable prices to the above review. I look forward to trying different stuff on their menu.

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What about the  tostadas to go with the salsa.  Are they regular ones like they serve in most cafes (which I don't like)?  I can live on good tostadas(chips)  like they serve in the states and salsa.

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15 hours ago, rafterbr said:

What about the  tostadas to go with the salsa.  Are they regular ones like they serve in most cafes (which I don't like)?  I can live on good tostadas(chips)  like they serve in the states and salsa.

Psst, rafterbr--corn chips are totopos.  

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Is he referring to the tostadas, that come in a plastic shrink-wrap, that most restaurants here serve with limon and salt? Not the totopos or cut up fried tortillas; you get these when the place doesn't make their own. These are just baked (I think, at least the commerical kind is certainly not greasy), still round, and a good way to get rid of stale tortillas if doing it yourself. And as ubiquitous as pre-packaged crackers up north.

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Just ate there today.  

I had the enchiladas rancheras.....3 to serving, with beans and rice.  Enchiladas fairly cool when served but other stuff hot.  Red salsa excellent....green salsa pretty picante.  Excellent attention.  Very nice, gracious people!

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1 hour ago, ComputerGuy said:

Is he referring to the tostadas, that come in a plastic shrink-wrap, that most restaurants here serve with limon and salt? Not the totopos or cut up fried tortillas; you get these when the place doesn't make their own. These are just baked (I think, at least the commerical kind is certainly not greasy), still round, and a good way to get rid of stale tortillas if doing it yourself. And as ubiquitous as pre-packaged crackers up north.

Yes what I was referring to is the tostadas which most restaurants serve but what I want is the totopos that More Liana refer's to.  I had not thought about them cutting up corn tortillas and baking or deep frying them but these were probably  the chips I liked at the lake.  In the states some of the Tex-Mex restaurants have their own totopos making machines.  Fresh totopos and a chopped salsa with fresh ingredients is hard to beat.

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They are, and those places that make their own are automatically a rung up the ladder in my book.

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7 hours ago, ComputerGuy said:

Is he referring to the tostadas, that come in a plastic shrink-wrap, that most restaurants here serve with limon and salt? Not the totopos or cut up fried tortillas; you get these when the place doesn't make their own. These are just baked (I think, at least the commerical kind is certainly not greasy), still round, and a good way to get rid of stale tortillas if doing it yourself. And as ubiquitous as pre-packaged crackers up north.

Do the tostada-making people still sell at the Wednesday Ajijic tianguis?  They used to be almost at the corner of Constitución, making fresh tostadas all day.  The method absolutely fascinated me: deep fry a big batch of tortillas till they're crisp, take them out of the hot oil all at once with tongs, drain for a couple of seconds.  Then dip an escobetilla (see photo) in salt water, flick the salt water all over the just-out-of-the-boiling-hot-oil tortillas.  Big sizzle, the water evaporates immediately, and the salt permeates the tortilla for just the right touch of salt.  Just amazed me to see it.

Maybe I am easily amused.
 image.png.47a9c4f02d1263150ffc56fdd9592b96.png

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I love the show, too. I don't hit the tianguis any more, but two brothers down at the bottom end should still be there. One sells flowers; on the other side of the street, they make the tostadas, and I would buy a huge bag (20 pesos!) and ask for extra salt. What a great hot snack.

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Not Tex-Mex.  Cheese enchiladas are made with either a Mexican cheese or some kind of dry, flaky cheese that doesn't melt.  The guacamole was excellent.  The service was good in that they came out every 20 minutes to see if we wanted more tea and to apologise for it taking over an hour to get our food.  They had "a large party of five people" and the kitchen was having a hard time.  Our food finally arrived ..cold.  No not lukewarm ... cold.  They very nicely apologized once again and took it back to heat it.  Cheese still didn't melt but the tortilla around it was now soggy.  The ice tea was good.  Again, not Tex-Mex.

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1 hour ago, Ian Greenwood said:

Anyone who goes to a restaurant which has been open less than a week and posts an extremely negative review probably received the food and service they deserved .... lemmings perhaps ?

Ian is it abnormal  to have a "soft" or "controlled " opening in  the food business?

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46 minutes ago, lakeside7 said:

Ian is it abnormal  to have a "soft" or "controlled " opening in  the food business?

Whether  there is a soft opening or not most people figure new places have kinks to work out. They usually wait a while (and a couple of visits) before giving a new place a hard hitting review. If a business reveals itself over time to be unable or unwilling to correct flaws then, by all means, let them have it. But, geez, give them a chance to get it right.

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I'd agree with your overall philosophy about restaurants getting some time, especially in Mexico. Well, only in Mexico. If you aren't fairlyready on day 1 of your soft opening back home, then you shouldn't be in the business. But here, the truth is, most places that aren't ready are never ready. They rarely improve, in my experience.

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23 minutes ago, ComputerGuy said:

I'd agree with your overall philosophy about restaurants getting some time, especially in Mexico. Well, only in Mexico. If you aren't fairlyready on day 1 of your soft opening back home, then you shouldn't be in the business. But here, the truth is, most places that aren't ready are never ready. They rarely improve, in my experience.

I agree with you, CG. But the optimist in me says, “Oh, come on, give them a chance. This time it could happen.” 

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I’ m sorry I should have stipulated....”in Mexico “  ....let’s not forget we are in a small Mexican town , many of these wonderful would be entrepreneurs are families risking hard earned dollars in the hope of making a living , without professional chefs or service staff . The idea that we should  denigrate their efforts so soon after opening just pisses me off ...unless you’ve ever been in the arena etc .etc ,you probably wouldn’t understand . Lakeside 7 asks  how about soft openings ,wonderful...the only way.. if you can afford to give away food for a week or more !  Because of my usual high end competition my highly choreographed openings last at least two weeks and cost a significant amount of money . The first few days we only feed the staff...and l have at least four professional cooks /chefs , beside myself..then I gradually incorporate the public ,much to their chagrin... only two tables every half hour...no more than 4 -6 persons . The longer   they can’t get a reservation , the more they want to come...we still limit numbers for weeks ! By now I’m sure I’m boring you all  . My main point is... ‘’ give ‘em a chance ‘’...spend a few dollars...just maybe a sows ear will become a silk purse with your help .

 

 

If 

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I've lived here long enough to know not to expect "everything right" when a restaurant opens. And yes, this is definitely a family run operation. So while I usually insist on waiting a couple of weeks before trying a place, I disregarded that in this case. Tonight I went there for the second time because some friends really wanted to try it out. We were a party of five and intentionally chose to go "late", arriving at 7:15-7:30, hoping they'd be less busy, etc. We didn't want to overwhelm them during rush hour, etc.

Their menu is extensive. Being a Friday night I thought they'd come back to the table and say "we've run out of that". Nope. Five people ordered five different items and all arrived in a timely manner. And it was all hot. And the salsas were great, again. And everyone seemed happy.

Admittedly, I liked what I had tonight (Chile Colorado) better than what I had the first time (a smothered burrito), but that's just me and my taste. Prices are so reasonable at Elena's, trying it out is not placing a big bet. Roll the dice.

 

 

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I did think we had waited a couple of weeks.  We were not disturbed at having to wait as we knew it was a new endeavor and was willing to give them the benefit of having kinks.  What I am saying is that this is not Tex-Mex food for anyone going there expecting Tex-Mex.  You don't make cheese enchiladas with dry, flaky cheese that doesn't melt....you just don't.  Now, if you like that kind of cheese in your enchiladas you will be absolutely ecstatic because it is plentiful.

I will repeat that the guacamole was excellent, the service from the waiters was great, the ice tea was very good.  I don't like runny beans and cold dry Mexican rice.  Now, those two things may be tweaked and it might be a one time thing ... However, the recipes for the enchiladas may not change but then again we will try them in a month or so and see if time has changed the recipes.

I was not trying to be as negative as it sounded ... just wanting people to know that though you may love the food, it isn't Tex-Mex!  

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Also, I am remembering when Mr. Greenwood said very negative things about my posting of the Southern Sisters that did not serve Southern food.  When I posted that Southern sweet tea doesn't come unsweetened and cream gravy isn't the consistency of milk, and that biscuits were not corn muffins, etc.  he was upset about that as well.  Unfortunately, they didn't change their recipes nor did they learn how to cook and it is now a very good pet place. 

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