Thursday, January 08, 2009

Taqueria Aguascalientes

estoy lleno...

That's my new phrase for the week and that's the way I feel right now.

I defy anyone to point out a Mexican eatery in Little Rock that doesn't tout itself as being "authentic." That's why I'm always a little skeptical when folks tell me about the latest and greatest Mexican restaurant to open. When my friend, Miguel, took me to Taqueria Aguascalientes today, he told me that it is probably the most authentic Mexican cafe in the area. And after a trial run at lunch, I'm inclined to agree. But whether it is or isn't the most authentic, we both agreed that it is very likely the best.

The menu is fairly simple without a lot of items to confuse and confound. Pretty much a short list of what the chef does very well. In fact the chef told me before I left that these are all family recipes. I suspect my friend was right when he said that he had not found anything here he didn't like. I found the soft corn tacos to be quite tantalizing - I had both pastor (spicy pork) and chorizo (Mexican style sausage). Although they were delicious without anything more than a squirt of lime juice (fresh lime wedges are furnished on the side), I think the verde salsa added a bit of pep that made them just right.

But this was merely a lead-in to the main course, the Gorditas. These were absolutely wonderful. I had one with the pastor and the other was filled with chopped up chili pepper and cheese (sadly, I'm not sure what it was called so I can't tell you how to order it.) If you've ever had a gordita at Taco Bell, you've been swindled. These are nothing like that, which is a very good thing.

I am told that they have very good seafood here and intend to try that next time in. The ceviche sounds good as does the seafood soup (Sopa de Mariscos).

This is a place that I will be taking my friends to and I don't hesitate to recommend it to strangers.

5412 Baseline Road, Little Rock, Arkansas


At 2:41 PM , Blogger J said...

There are plenty of inauthentic Mexican places in LR, but they all call themselves Tex-Mex or Southwestern.

At 3:11 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

amen J. now this sounds fantastic...

At 7:57 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

actually, there are lots of inauthentic Mexican restaurants in the area that serve exactly the same dishes, with the same menu, from the same food service. A good clue is if they have a "speedy gonzales" on the lunch menu.

I think it's exciting to find someone NOT serving mass produced rellenos and tamales.

At 12:46 PM , Blogger matt said...

I am from California, land of mexican food, and this place was great and authentic. I had an al pastor burrito and it was great, I will go back. Thanks for the review!


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