Monday, February 27, 2012

Tu Mero Mole (San Jose, CA): Goat Nachos!

Yes, you read that right.  GOAT Nachos.  Gross, you say?  Come on!  Goats aren't gross, they're cute...
...well, kind of.  I guess it depends?

In any case, a couple of my friends wanted to use the groupons they had for Tu Mero Mole, and since I'd already had a couple different varieties of nachos there - the camarones (shrimp) ones were awesome - I decided to special order some nachos with their surprisingly tasty goat meat.  Trust me, this is some really good stuff.  Rather than plain, with minimal seasoning, like their more traditional meats (chicken, carne asada, etc...) the goat meat is slathered in a savory, flavorful sauce that kind of reminded me of Indian food - in a good way!  Combined with their marinated onions and peanut salsa, which is one of my favorite salsas ever, this was a great plate of nachos.  Plus, how many people can say they've had goat nachos?  Hopefully more after they read this post and try it for themselves!

Rating: 4 out of 5
Rating Notes: If you can get past the fact that this is goat, and not mind pushing aside all of the fat that comes along with it, you're in for a treat!  For info on the other ingredients in these nachos, see my first Tu Mero Mole Post.
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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Tequila's Taqueria (San Jose, CA): Super Nachos with Chicken

Boy was I ever drunk after having lunch at this pleasant little taqueria.  You'll never believe this, but The moment I walked in the door, the very attractive female cashier, who was wearing a very skimpy bikini, layed across the counter and a big dude grabbed me and made me do body shots of Cabo Wabo off of her until I couldn't see straight!  I guess they weren't kidding when they namee this place "Tequila's Taqueria!"  They even had some out-of-control variety show playing on the TV:
Um, yeah.  That’s totally true ;-)
So now that I have your attention…
I could totally have just written "See review of Taqueria Vallarta Chicken Nachos" and would have been done with this post.  These nachos are a dead ringer in every way except for appearance for Taqueria Vallarta's.  But I know I have dedicated fans who demand more than just a re-read of an old review, so here you go:
Other taquerias take notice - THIS is how you do tortilla chips!  Thick, deep-fried corn tortillas are the best way to go for nachos because they don't get soggy as fast and they taste great.  Aside from having a little too much cheese, these nachos had all the right stuff.  They even left out the beans which I believe amount to nothing but filler most of the time.  Tender shredded chicken, generous sour cream and guacamole plus a healthy portion of pico de gallo rounded out this plate for a satisfying lunch.

Rating: 3½ out of 5
Rating Notes: Would have been a 4 but for a bit too much cheese, messy presentation, and somewhat bland chicken.  3 different choices at the salsa bar and they're all very good.
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Saturday, February 11, 2012

Nacho Cheese Shots?

Ok, I know, despite the title of this post that I used to try and catch your attention, this has nothing to do with Nachos.  In any case, today I decided to take an inventory of my shot glass collection and found that I have 133 that I've picked up myself around the USA and also been given by people who have bothered to travel outside of this country.  I'll bet no one else you know has a shot glass from a former Soviet Republic that doesn't even exist anymore!  Anyway, don't worry, my next post will be nacho-related.  If not, I'll at least do a shot of plastic nacho cheese and post a video or something!  ;-)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Mexico Lindo (San Jose, CA) : Nachos with Chicken

Here's what this giant plate of nachos looked like when it first arrived at the table:

Pretty drab, eh?  Here's what they looked like after I spruced 'em up a bit:
Much better!
So, to answer your first question, yes, I should only be eating nachos once a week.
To answer your second question, no, I didn't eat this entire enormous plate of nachos, otherwise I'd probably  have had a heart attack on the spot or at least on the way home and wouldn't be writing this right now.
To answer your third question, no, the nachos weren't very good.
To answer your fourth question (why are you asking me so many questions?), it was because the chicken wasn't very flavorful and there were waaaayyy too many refried beans underneath, turning the chips into a big soggy mess before I even had a chance to eat a few of them.
To answer your fifth question (another one?), the chips were ok, but the freebie "ROI" chips that we munched on before we got our entrees were great.  They were the thin type and almost as good as the ones at Chevy's
To answer your sixth question (seriously, all these questions are getting out of hand!), if I came back to this restaurant, which is part of a 6 restaurant bay area chain, I'd skip the nachos and go with something more along the lines of the delicious-looking chicken fajita salad that my friend ordered.
To answer your seventh question (that's it - I'm done - here's the damn rating already!)…
Rating: 2½ out of 5
Rating Notes: No rating notes for you!  You asked me too many damn questions!
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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Adelita's Taqueria (San Jose, CA): Super Nachos with Chicken

Oh, Adelita's, why do you toy with my emotions?  I walk into your clean, modern dining room with it's sparkly black marble tables and light wood counters and chairs and across the way, I see a hip, open kitchen with cooks hustling here and there.  You even have a well-produced menu board and a dish called "Sky's special burrito".  I'm getting excited now…
Your little light-up "order ready" buzzer/coasters are a first for any taqueria I've been to and remind me of hip bar & grill.  Should I be nervous that you are a hit-and-miss, overly Californified taqueria where I'll get some "creative" cook's idea of a new twist on Nachos?  Puhleez no!
I sit down and sip my Coke until the buzzer signals the end of my above average-length wait and I walk up to the counter to retrieve my highly anticipated plate of nachos…
Not much to look at, are they?  The emotional roller coaster goes downhill.  Check out that wormy-looking squirt of sour cream and all of those chips with nothing on them.  Are you kidding me?  Maybe they'd look better with…

 …some jalapeños, onions, and a generous helping of your yummy "orange sauce"?

That's more like it.  I’m almost happy again…

Munching my way through the plate, I'm fairly satisfied because I'm so hungry and every bite has a bunch of tangy sauce on it.  Only after about 5 bites do I discover the real strength of these nachos: the generous chunks of juicy, flaky, shredded white meat chicken hiding under the sour cream worm and bland pico de gallo.  The more I eat, the more I find.  This definitely helps, but I must tell you, Adelita's, I'm not as excited as when I first walked in with a wallet that was almost $10 heavier than it is now!  I don't know if I'll ever come back to you...

Rating: 3½ out of 5
Rating Notes: Despite the completeness of the ingredients list, one of the ugliest plates of nachos I've seen, at least before I added the orange sauce.  Lame, store-bought chips and coule you have also put a little effort into squishing the avocado and cutting up the olives or is this minimalist approach your attempt and trying to add a "California Cuisine" touch?).  Creepy looking sour cream worm.  Excellent, all white meat chicken keeps these from dropping below 3½ stars.
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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Alicia's Cafe (San Jose, CA): Large Supreme Nachos with Chicken

Sigh.  Looking at this plate of nachos, I thought to my self, "Wow!  Those are going to be great!"
These nachos had the ingredients and presentation to bring in a great score, but they were kind of like British cars: the looks and all of the cool features are there at first, but living with them doesn't leave the best taste in your mouth, you wonder why you paid so much, and you'll likely never buy one again. 
The good:
All standard ingredients accounted for:
- Warm, crispy chips
- Refried beans
- Shredded chicken
- Generous portions of guacamole and sour cream
- Pico de Gallo
Less common ingredient accounted for:
- Olives (always a nice touch!)
Really big portion (they weren't kidding - these are "Large")
The Bad:
-Flavorless, "Blando Calrissian" chicken
-Cheese sprinkled on top of guacamole and sour cream = no melting - what the hell?
-$9.50 plus tax and tip
A Tip:
I'm quickly learning that except in extreme cases (like Taco Bell), price has nothing to do with how good a plate of nachos tastes.  When you go to a sit-down-get-served restaurant, you pay more, but with the exception of Angel's Rock House, the taste and quality of the nachos is usually equal or inferior to what you find in many hole-in-the-wall taquerias for a lot less money.
Rating: 2½ out of 5
Rating Notes: See above
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