Zocalo is really top notch modern Mexican cuisine. Do not buy their house dishes all the time but the specials are just that. Really worth a try.
Yeah, I've got to agree with you. This place is solid. We went there a few days ago for the first time, and had what I would describe as a better than average experience.
Not everything was good, but there was enough that was good that I felt like I'd go back.
The thing that sticks out as particularly disappointing were the shrimp tostadas (offered as an appetizer, but really enough to make a whole meal out of). The shrimp tasted not quite off, but definitely not fresh. It was probably the stuff you get pre-cooked, frozen in a big sack. The tostada shells were stale (tasted like Los Pericos brand, which is probably what they were, instead of house made).
On the other hand, the chips were fresh and delicious with a really nice, hot sauce.
Neither of us got a special, since that evening's didn't seem thrilling. I had the pork chop al pastor, which I really liked, though those of you looking for a central Mexican style adobo pork al pastor will be disappointed. I like the adobo better than the northern dry al pastor (which is what Zocalo serves), but this was so tasty I just avoided making the comparison. My wife had the mole enchiladas and we were both impressed with them. The sauce was not cloying, the chicken was tender, and best of all, the tortillas were good--flavorful and toothy but not tough.
All that said, if I were in California (or Chicago or anyplace else with a large Mexican community) I'd never set foot in this place. It really is only good in comparison with the dearth of passable Mexican cuisine in the region. If I was a more committed chowhound I'd make the drive out to Kennet Square more often. Now that's where you can actually get Mexican food good enough to get excited about around here.
Funny, I thought I'd posted about it, but must not have. To be honest, I can't remember the name of the place, but it's really great. It's on Baltimore pike, in a shopping center West of "downtown" Kennet Square. It's a byo. the menu is fairly broad, including some truly fantastic gorditas. The salsa seems to be made fresh daily (judging by the variation in both type and quality), it's usually really good, and you never know until you have a bite how hot it is.
This is not a "fancy" place--I don't think most people would take a date here, though they should--It's roadside stand food, by and large, but, then, that's my favorite stuff. The tacos are good, the burritos are good, the enchiladas are good, everything I've tried has been good. Oh, and it's _really_ cheap. And you get a lot of food. Don't try calling for directions, though. I tried this the first time I went, from a gas station near-by. Suffice it to say, whoever answers the phone doesn't speak a word of English, and I don't speak nearly enough Spanish to get useful driving directions.
I'll try to hunt up the name of the place and post it again. I haven't been in a while, because, at least for me, it's a pretty long haul. I think it took like an hour each way. (of course, I'm new here so I didn't really know the best route to take.) That said, I bet the drive is really nice this time of year, if you go for all that fall foliage business.
re: Gabriel Solis
It sounds like you're talking about Taqueria Moroleon
in Kennett Square. (There's also one in Newark,
Delware.) I agree, the food is good and quite
If you're coming into town from the east (i.e. from
Philadelphia area) go most of the way through town
until you get to a commercial, strip-mall-ish area
on the west side of town. Turn left at the stop
light (I think there's a Pizza Hut right there) and
continue through the next light. There will be
strip malls on either side (Giant Food store on the
right); go into the left one, and Taqueria Moroleon
is toward the middle.
Try the tamales and the tacos de arrachera.
Enjoy! Anybody know of any other good Mexican places
out that way (or in Philadelphia)?
P.S. If you like Mexican cooking, you find a basic
stock of supplies in the Giant across the street.
It's not a specialty store, but they do have some
things (e.g. canned chipotles, tomatillos) that
general grocery stores don't necessarily stock.