At the edge of a residential block, Taqueria Guadalajara evokes a vibrant nostalgia of days past. The walls are mostly covered with picture frames of various sizes, all of which feature the image of an American or Mexican, or Mexican-American icon. Everyone from Elvis Presley to Vicente Fernández to Tejano's sweetheart, Selena, watches over you as you browse the menu. The norteño soundtrack to our meal prompted us to reminisce about days past as kids in the backseat of the car, watching the world through the window.
This night's meal began with queso flameado. Warm and stringy cheese topped with a small amount of perfectly seasoned and tender bites of bistec had us smiling with satisfaction. A little cheese wrapped around a chip, topped with bits of meat and a squirt of salsa verde - hell, I could've made a meal out of that!
My order for the night was a huarache topped with deshebrada. The Spanish word "huarache" translates to "sandal" in English. This means that huaraches on a plate are basically a sandal-shaped, fried corn-dough base, usually topped with refried beans, lettuce, tomato, queso fresco, crema and your choice of meat. Deshebrada is meat stewed in a red chile sauce and cooked to tenderness and then shredded. My favorite part of this dish was the deshebrada. The meat was cooked to ideal tenderness and the flavor of the red chile sauce was not overpowering. Combined with the toppings, and the delicious salsa verde that comes in an unlabeled condiment bottle at almost every taqueria, this was a filling and satisfying choice. A $4.95 well-spent.
Across the table, the order was an even greater hit. A torta de bistec with all the usual fillings: shredded cheese, lettuce, tomato, guacamole, and sour cream. The bread was warm and soft. Nestled beside the torta was a taco de pastor topped with cilantro and onion. The pork was delicious and tender.
I want to make a point in saying that despite us arriving 90 minutes before they closed, the food tasted fresh and was served warm. They didn't skimp on the serving size nor the service, and our waitress was very polite. Overall, I highly recommend a stop at Taqueria Guadalajara as they clearly take pride in what they serve.
FYI: The tortillas are store-bought, but it is only obvious in their appearance and not in the flavor as the taste of the tortilla did not take away from the contents of the taco.
Price of our most recent visit:
2 iced teas
1 order of queso flameado
1 torta de bistec
1 taco de pastor
1 huarache de deshebrada
Do you have a favorite taqueria you think I should visit? Don't hesitate to let me know in the comments.