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Taqueria in Redwood City

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  • Larry Stein May 1, 2004 03:41 PM
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I'm now working in Menlo Park so I'm looking for suggestions.

I did a search (oy, the search engine ain't the greatest, but that's old news...) Came up with the pollo al carbon next to the Michoacan Produce Market and Taco El Grullo. There's also Taco Grullense(sp?) across the street from Costco. I tried La Azteca which is kitty-corner to Harry's Hofbrau. Have eaten the al pastor, chipotle steak and carne asada. I thought the first two were merely OK, but I loved the carne asada. Nice smoky, charred texture on the outside, and juicy and tender on the inside.

Anywhere else? For that matter, what suggestions for Menlo Park (any cuisine)? I know there's Su Hong for Chinese, Trader Joe's for inexpensive, and Draeger's for sandwiches.

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  1. r
    RWCFoodie (Karen)

    Not exactly what you asked for, but here's a link re Gombei, etc.

    Link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

    1. Gonzalez Taqueria on Middlefield and Fifth - not to be missed. Fresh tortillas and goat stew every day. Also Chavez Meat Market 2 locations - one near Gonzalez and another by Brewster and Arguello in RWC.
      Forget Mexican in Menlo Park - too upscale Try Naomi sushi on El Camino, Silan and Left Bank on Santa Cruz.

      1. My favorite Mexican burrito place was Chayito's on laurel street in san Carlos. They marinated the steak and served with pico de gallo on a thin steamed fresh tortilla. MMMMMMMMMMM!!! They had 2 other locations, San Mateo on 2nd and B Street and up by CSM. I wish I knew where they went. 8.(

        2 Replies
        1. re: mike

          Chayito's was my favorite burrito place ever. I went back there in the late 90s and the place was still there, but it wasn't as good. Now, I don't think it's there at all. :-(

          1. re: jlecount

            I get the craving for a Howard's Special or Double Beefer and Cheese from Chayito's periodically and get so bummed that they are gone. I just put in a call to San Carlos City Hall to try and contact the old business owners to see if they moved somewhere else or to get the recipes. Awaiting reply from them.
            Oh, and $1 giant beers out on the back patio watching sports on TV!!! (heavy sigh)

        2. Outstanding tortas at La Casita Chilanga.
          Excellent birria at Gonzalez.

          Link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

          1. m
            Melanie Wong

            You might want to start a separate thread for Menlo Park with a relevant subject line. Su Hong in MP is Chinese-American whereas the one in Palo Alto that I like very much specializes in Shanghainese. You might want to check out the new J&J hawaiian grill that I posted about recently for a quick and cheap lunch plate.

            1. Somebody mentioned La Casita Chilanga's tortas already, which I second wholeheartedly. The sit-down Casita on El Camino (as opposed to the more take-out oriented location on Middlefield) also has a menu featuring other Mexico City specialties like huaraches, quesadillas, etc. Nevertheless, I still find myself ordering the tortas most of the time, especially La Tesorito.

              Another good Mexican place I've found is Taqueria y Carniceria Apatzingan on Middlefield around 7th - tasty carnitas. There are, of course, approximately 6 trillion taquerias on that section of Middlefield, so report back if you find any other good ones.

              Other places worth trying in the Menlo Park/RWC area include Cafe Silan for Kurdish food, Amelia's for pupusas, and New Kapadokia for Turkish food.

              1. Just north of MP is Belmont, and Belmont has El Metate, 120 Harbor Blvd....delicious, fair-price...easy to get to (101 to Holly, up Industrial to Harbor)...

                Metate has always been great for me...your mileage may vary

                There was a good discussion of burgers in the area that can be searched out on here...my pick is the Oasis on El Camino, and it has lots of other stuff, too.

                1. Every El Grullense variation I have been to has had good, cheap tacos. I can never remember how they are related. La Casita Chilanga for great tortas as has been mentioned.

                  El Grullense #1 (1243 Middlefield, Redwood City)- had tastier tortillas (could have been random) and their salsa rojo is relatively spicy. Have had pastor and carnitas. Carnitas were better.

                  El Grullense #2 (2940 Middlefield, Redwood City)- their salsa rojo was great the two times I have been (even if it is somehow the same as the above), and their al pastor has been pretty good. Good carnitas. Right next door to La Casita Chilanga.

                  El Grullense E and E (2401 Middlefield, Redwood City) - the one across the street form Costco. Carnitas were pretty good and they give a lot of meat, not too greasy (n=2).

                  El Grullense E and E (999 El Camino, Redwood City)- the one at Sequoia Station- haven't been to this location.

                  El Grullense on 5th/Spring St. (haven't been to this one)

                  Taqueria El Grullens (1280 El Camino, Redwood City- just down the street from the E and E at Sequoia Station). Decent Carne Asada, not outstanding. Carnitas have been very good on occasion as has the al Pastor. Seems to have the same look and menu as the Taqueria El Grullense (J and G) in Palo Alto (3636 El Camino Real), which is pretty good, but the carnitas are very oily and the al Pastor is all over the place (although they do have it on the spit).

                  There is also the El Grullense Grill on Woodside that has a full bar I believe (haven't been). There are a huge number of taquerias on Middlefield Rd, and I would love to find one with homemade tortillas, but haven't as of yet.

                  -----
                  El Grullense II
                  2940 Middlefield Rd, Redwood City, CA 94063

                  La Casita Chilanga
                  2928 Middlefield Rd, Redwood City, CA 94063

                  El Grullense Grill
                  768 Woodside Rd, Redwood City, CA 94061

                  El Grullense E & E
                  2401 Middlefield Rd, Redwood City, CA 94063

                  El Grullense
                  1243 Middlefield Rd, Redwood City, CA 94063

                  El Grullense E & E
                  999 El Camino Real, Redwood City, CA 94063

                  El Grullense
                  795 5th Ave, Redwood City, CA 94063

                  Taqueria El Grullense J & G
                  3636 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94306

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: P. Punko

                    Your Grullense list looks comprehensive for RWC, with the notable exception of 1280 El Camino, which my family refers to as "No. 1" or "Old Grullense." This is the location in the hermit-crabbed A&W one block south of Jefferson.

                    Not to tip my hand on my next project or anything, but ... a cursory check of the Hound and Yelp yields a nice round number -- 36 bona fide taquerias in RWC (including the part of Little Michoacan that's technically unincorporated San Mateo County). Last Chowhound expedition I could see was back in 2003.

                    Sushi Monster
                    http://www.emeraldlake.com/sushilist....

                    1. re: Sushi Monster

                      I'm sorry, P. Punko. On second reading, I saw it in your post, just not in the links list. My apologies.

                      1. re: Sushi Monster

                        At the Old Grullense I particularly love the tomatillo salsa; I don't know what they put in it, but I find it devastatingly addictive. I've bought a giant 20 oz cup full of it to bring home. Everything I've tried there is great, and the fish tacos are particularly good. Not your classic baja style, but grilled with a nice char.

                        1. re: mchan

                          Before we had a twinge of guilt, we used to bring our own small tupperware containers to No. 1 to purloin the red sauce. On a really good day, the red will leave ... not a dry eye in the house. There's some variance from day to day, as I would expect with any product made from fresh ingredients daily.

                          1. re: Sushi Monster

                            I totally agree. What kills me is their salsas are better than the ones you can get at the Chavez (the one on El Camino), so when we make tacos at home, I try to find a way to get some from the Grullense.

                            The Chavez on Middlefield had some pretty good salsas at the meat counter. Again, I think they are always a little different. The rojo is usually always hotter at the market than the El Grullense taquerias (not a prob for me, I love it spicy, but our friends have learned that they need to ask for the green).

                        2. re: Sushi Monster

                          Oh, my bad- thanks, SM-

                          that one is hard to find because it doesn't have the "e" at the end in their listing. This is the one I go to the most, but we are trying to hit them all. Then we will move to the non-Grullens(e)s- any recs on other taquerias up that way? I do like this El Grullens because they have chile colorado. Works great for tacos, but too wet for a burrito, it's just a mess.

                          -----
                          Taqueria El Grullense
                          1280 El Camino Real, Redwood City, CA

                          1. re: P. Punko

                            I'm counting 36 in RWC right now, (six Grullenses, I believe), That's including a couple seafood-only places, but not counting hybrids such as Salvadoran/Mexican, etc. There's an infinite number of ways to split hairs over what qualifies. See what one lady over on Y*lp has done already. If you want my list, just zip me an e-mail. No question there's enough within RWC (and the adjacent unincorporated part of Little Michoacan/Fair Oaks/Friendly Acres) to fill an entire year of lunches.

                      2. What, so, you're talking lunch in downtown Menlo Park? That's a bit different from Taquerias in RC

                        Mi Rancho on Willow has good burritos. I think they're better than Mi Hacienda around the corner. As you point out, there are a million burrito places from the Chavez at 5th and ECR on down to middlefield. Cataloging all would take years.

                        Cafe Barrone has a nice panini and sandwiches

                        Crepes at Crepe Cafe - often a little too light for me

                        British Banker Club has burgers. They're nothing special.
                        Jefferey's has its fans. As does Oasis.

                        I've had a few business lunches at Oak Town Grill. A little high-end for everyday lunch, but pretty tasty. They often have a nice special, but show up in a jacket to avoid feeling underdressed.

                        I'm very partial to the teppanyaki at Tokyo Subway - but the sushi is poor

                        Everyone loves BackAYard - make mine pork jerk - longish drive

                        There are 4 menlo park places on Sushi Monster's list

                        Cafe Sylvan has nice med plates, service is leisurely

                        Su Hong MP is awful - gloppy starchy American yuck

                        jzCool has come up in the world, but might still be overpriced for truely gourmet sandwitches. I would probably eat there often for lunch if in the area. There have been a few dinner reviews - give a holla if you eat there.

                        Or are you up sand hill road? Then you'll want to know about the deli in Sharon Heights Center, a nice mom-n-pop with a wide range.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: bbulkow

                          Uh, thanks for the tips, but note the date on my original post...

                          That job ended in Sept. that year.

                          1. re: bbulkow

                            yeah, a bit off-topic, but the deli (Eric's) has always been a favorite of mine, in the Sharon Heights center...