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Doña Tomas - Recent Reviews?

Has anyone been lately? Any reviews?
I would like to take my father there this weekend for his birthday.

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  1. I've been a number of times lately and I always have very good meals. I really liked the dungeness crab empanada like appetizer that was on the menu a few weeks ago, I love their ceviche, and I've had good luck with all of the fish and meat dishes that I've tried.

    1. Will a vegetarian be happy there or will he have approximately one boring choice?

      1 Reply
      1. re: crunchy

        Hmm, there's always at least one vegetarian entree on the menu, and I think there are frequently two, and always a number of appetizers/sides that are vegetarian. But none of them are boring, I'm a dedicated carnivore and I've ordered their vegetarian entrees before and been very happy.

      2. Just went Friday night and had an excellent meal and experience. We had a terrific huitaloche (corn fungus) quesadilla appetizer that I could eat at every meal, every day! The ceviche is indeed stellar for a Mex version and that was the only critter we had.

        Their version of chile rellanos are amazing, not breaded or deep fried, just green chile goodness, stuffed with smooth, meltingly yummy goat cheese, served with very flavorful creamy black beans. We also had a veg enchilada that was filled with squash blossoms, came with well prepared mixed greens, garlicy and perfectly balanced.

        Their masa products are all fresh and taste of corn, their salsa is a lovely puree of smoky chilies served with housemade chips. And don't miss the margaritas, especially if you are splurging, the $17. Paradiso is without a doubt the best cocktail I ever had, even though I hate to admit I paid that much for a drink. Service was friendly, efficient and welcoming.

        Go, he will love it!

        1. I went not long ago and it's about 80% were it should be. I think the high prices for great Mexican food are ok, especially with a good atmosphere but the service was sloppy and the food good to very good, never great.

          1. The LA Times had a rave review last September of the cookbook by Thomas and Dona but I couldn't get the link t it from the LA Times website. Here's a link to the Amazon.com stuff on it and excerpts from the LAT review:

            1. Thanks all - I'll report back after my weekend visit.

              1. Here's my report - in sum, it was very good. I was impressed with the quality of the food. I had requested a table for 4 at 6pm near the door as my father has difficulty walking and my request was granted. We started off with the delicious, crispy & thick chips and the ancho chile salsa. The chips are sprinkled with cheese - maybe cotija. The salsa for the chips was also good, but the salsa serving was so skimpy. You couldn't even fit a chip in the little itty bitty ramekin they give you for the salsa. I had to spoon it out and ask for more.

                The drinks were great, epecially their specials. I had the Low Rider and my friend had the Pina Colada, which was really very good. Not to sweet. The only agua fresca available was Blood Orange. I tould have been nice to have more flavors available.

                We had 2 orders of carnitas, 1 order of the carne asada with a mushroom cream sauce and the chiles en nogada stuffed with goat cheese. I thought everything was practically perfect. My chiles were prepared simply with a tomato sauce that was a little bland, but it didn't overpower the flavor of the cheese and chiles. The carnitas were great - juicy and crispy, just as my dad likes them. They only weird thing was that they were rubbed with Mexican Oregano. I have a thing against Mexican oregano sometimes. Otherwise, the carnitas dish came with salsa fresca in the itty bitty ramekin. Again, my father needed to ask for more salsa. The rice was great. Sometimes I like to measure the quality of Mexican restaurants by the rice, and the rice was almost as good as my mother's rice. The carne asada was also very good. My mom complained about the presentation - watercress on one side and a sweet potato puree that she really did not like. The tortillas were also fantastic.

                Desserts were decent. Ici cream served with baked apples, raisins and pecans sprinked with cajeta. A coconut pie that was not supersweet.

                The biggest drawback of Dona Tomas is their lack of a spicier salsa. We asked for a hot sauce and they brought a bottle of habanero sauce...they lose major points for that. Otherwise, the service was fine. I am definitely going back.

                Total for 4 was $130 w/o tip.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Mari

                  I forgot about our appetizer - the quesadillas with huitlacoche. These were delicious, although the huitlacoche flavor did not come through.

                  1. re: Mari

                    So glad you had a good experience! Yeah, I really do not like the sweet potato puree (a friend of mine compared it to baby food), but that's one of the few things that I've had there that I haven't liked.

                    1. re: JasmineG

                      I love the sweet potato puree -- it *looks* like baby food, but it tastes delicious!