HOME > Chowhound > Mid-Atlantic >

Discussion

Authentic Mexican Food in Monmouth Cty

Hi,
New to the boards!

I am starting to enjoy authentic mexican food - not the tex-mex stuff.
Anybody know anything about La Tapatia in Asbury Park or about La Hacienda in Bradley Beach.

Thanks

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
Posting Guidelines | FAQs | Feedback
Cancel
  1. Haven't been to the ones listed above. Bahia De Acapulco on 5 South Street in Freehold is very good. Pretty authentic Mexican Food. You might have a language barrier there. There's usually a waitress who will translate for you the specials on their board.

    3 Replies
    1. re: wench31

      Is this the place next to Cornerstone Cafe in the old Windmill location? I've been meaning to give it a try and figure there will be a language issue based upon the signage alone which is not in English. What's good?

      1. re: jsfein

        Yes, it's next to Cornerstone. Anything with steak is good. They have soup there. They had fish head soup, shrimp soup. They're spicy and real good. It's written in Spanish on their board, though. You'll have to ask for translation there.
        Alot of people also go to El Meson as well, which is on Main St in Freehold.
        They speak English there.

      2. re: wench31

        It's more CalMex than authentic Mexican, but The Shack in Sea Bright is pretty tasty. Great Guac and good fish tacos

      3. Juanito's in Red Bank
        Casa Comida Mexican Restaurant in Long Branch

        4 Replies
        1. re: HillJ

          HillJ, I'm surprised to see you suggest Casa Comida. There was a time it was the only Mexican-styled restaurant in these part. I always considered it Tex-Mex. It was not owned or run by Mexicans, nor was the food anything more than just passable. So once El Meson, we stopped going to Casa Comida. (I note below that taboni has been to Casa Comida recently and says the food was horrible.)

          1. re: RGR

            RGR, I haven't been to Casa Comida in some time and I'm sorry to hear that the quality has gone downhill. When I first relocated to the area, it was our first exposure to Tex-Mexican food and I remember liking it.

            I have tried the restaurants recommended in the Freehold area and enjoyed them but Juanito's in R/Bank is my favorite (not even sure why) but I like the place.

            1. re: HillJ

              Is it possible you like Juanito's because the food is good? lol And there are others who think it's very good. We've never been there, mainly because El Meson is much closer to us. A poor excuse, really, since we have no trouble traveling much longer distances than from our house to Red Bank for excellent food.

            2. re: RGR

              Casa Comida is positively horrible, especially when you consider that a short drive away is one of the biggest latin/mexican populations in jersey, right in Long Branch. There are a bunch of excellect tacquerias where the people don't even speak english. Some places don't even have an english menu! A quick drive down broadway should get you a bunch of good taco joints.

          2. I like La Hacienda a lot. Nothing fancy, just good meat on two fresh soft tortillas with a grilled onion and a wedge of lime. A few places like it near where I work in New Brunswick as well.

            1. I will second Juanito's in Red Bank and El Meson in Freehold. Last couple of times I was in Casa Comida the food was horrible. I won't be going back.

              1. I've enjoyed some of the food at Acapulquenos on Broadway in Long Branch. I haven't been there in nearly a year, but I recall I loved the steak tacos, guacamole. Very good simple rice and beans. It's a casual corner restaurant.

                1. La Tapitia in Asbury, La Chalupa in Red Bank, and El Meson in Freehold are my favorites. I also enjoyed Taqueria Dos Hermanos in Wall on RT. 71. I know alot of people rec. Juanito's, while many don't care for La Chalupa. La Chalupa is very casual, and usually full of Mexican workers on lunch/dinner break, to me that speaks authenticity. That's not to say that Juanito's isn't authentic, it's just a little dressed up to atract American people.

                  18 Replies
                  1. re: Herm

                    La Chalupa for lunch is fine but for dinner we'd head to Juanito's-plus I like their indoor patio alot. (RGR, maybe that's why I like it--the patio :)

                    1. re: HillJ

                      thanks for the replies - do all the places mentioned serve the non-taco bell / casa comida type tex-mexy food?

                      1. re: tuxedo

                        tuxedo, I'm no expert. For 10.00 you can give Juanito's a try for lunch and decide.

                        1. re: HillJ

                          going to try it! Thanks!

                      2. re: HillJ

                        Ah, yes, patios! One of the things we love to do during the warm weather is to have lunch at El Meson on their *outdoor* patio. :-)

                        1. re: HillJ

                          Actually lunch is when I usually go, I'll have to try Juanito's.

                        2. re: Herm

                          I tired La Tapitia for lunch today and must concur with Herm. The food was wonderful. I had most of the items that Andrea Clurfeld mentioned in her article in the APP. I ordered the chicken soup (caldo de pollo), two tamales (one stuffed with cheese and the other with pork and a red sauce), and a chicken huarache. Remembering that Andrea mentioned a fabulous orange/carrot juice drink, I asked if they had any fresh juices. I was told that they had watermelon water which I ordered. Everything was fresh, well made and tasty. The chicken soup came delivered in a small pot with a plate of chopped onion, cilantro and lime wedges for garnish. The soup was red (not the typical yellow) with chicken pieces, corn, carrots, and cabbage. Very comforting and tasted like home. The tamales were also good. While I would have appreciated a sauce like a salsa verde, I still enjoyed them. I've never had a huarache before but it was different from what I had imagined. I was thinking more pizza, but instead, the crust was soft/pita like and the toppings were refried beans (?), lettuce, cheese, jalapenos and chicken. The huarache was served with a side of white rice and corn. The service was also excellent. Our waitress took the time to explain the menu as well as bring out extra plates and spit portions. I will definitely return and recommend wholeheartedly.

                          1. re: bgut1

                            Bgut1
                            - Unbelievable! Just came back from La Tapatiafor dinner tonight and I feel like we must have been at different restaurants! We had been very excited to go and I must say this has to ahve been one of my worst dining expereinces ever. I had meant to re-read the article in the APP before going and perhaps we did not order the correct items but I find our experience inexcusable. We started with the chille rellenos which were supposed to be hand made served over refried beans and a mexican mayo and the server who unlike yours (wish we had yours!) was very surely and unfriendly brought out deep fried jalepeno poppers! I'm talking straight from the freezer to the fryer. 8 on a plate with not even a drop of refried beans or "mayo" When we questioned our server about this discrepancy on the menu she told us that the kitchen "did not know how to make those!"

                            For main course I ordered the Cueltas con Mole which were described as porkchops sauted and topped with mole sauce. The menu said "very good" and was one of the specialties. My dining companion ordered the shrimp fajitas. The pork "chop" was pounded so thin and full of fat and bone I hardly could get any meat off of it and the shrimp was so undercooked and wiggly they could have been swimming. We were also given no silverware or plates for the "poppers" or the fajitas.
                            The only up side was that the Mole sauce was quite good and the tortillas that came with the fajitas were def. home-made and came in abundance.
                            Our server never came back to our table - only to clear our plates.
                            Its amazing that we could go on the same day and have 2 completely different experiences. I was going to try the tamale and the huraches and perhaps we just made poor menu choices but in my opinion poor food is poor food.
                            Like I said, we really had high hopes for this place. And i am jealous reading your review...unfortunately between the jalepeno poppers, uncooked shrimp and mystery meat "pork chop" it will be very hard for me to go back and give it another try. I'm having a hard time even stomaching my meal.

                            1. re: stack_c

                              Hey stack_c, that's pretty amazing. Talk about a case study. Two completely different experiences on the same day. I would chalk that up to a bad server and wrong items ordered, HOWEVER, I completely agree with you that bad food is bad food and what you were served was inexcusable. I guess your report tempers my enthusiasm for this place. Sorry.

                              1. re: bgut1

                                No apologies neccessary...unless you were in the kitchen! :) I am glad you had a good meal there. Apparently others have too. It was very busy when we went and perhaps they were over extended. Like you said an interesting case study indeed!

                          2. re: Herm

                            There is a La Chalupa "coming soon" sign on Rt. 33 on the Howell/Wall border just east of the Collingswood Flea Market in a space (I think) previously occupied by a luncheonette. I've not been to the one in Red Bank, but given the relative proximity to my home, I'll try the new location once it opens.

                            1. re: jsfein

                              Yes, I saw the sign. Interesting place for Mexican restaurant. Probably hoping to catch commuter traffic.

                              1. re: jsfein

                                Actually la Chalupa just closed in red bank. There was a grand opening 2 days ago it is now called Senor Peppers. They had signs in both spanish and english looking for bilingual servers, so at least that is promising. I hope to review this place sometime next week.

                                1. re: chris the bartender

                                  That doesn't sound promising at all. I love La Chalupa, and was bummed out to see that it was closed 'for renovations' 2 weeks ago. I didn't see any mention of 'Senor Peppers'. Terrible name, sounds almost chain-like. Oh well, looks like I'll never be able to get the Mexican sandwich with spicy pork. Now I'll have to go to Juanito's grocery and get the torta with carne enchilada.

                                  1. re: Herm

                                    Like Herm, I'm saddened by the news. I too had never got around to trying the famous spicy pork sandwich. While the name doesn't sound too promising, I'll do my best not to prejudge. Although I look forward to your report Chris, F77's post below does not bode well.

                                    1. re: Herm

                                      While I haven't been yet, a restaurant by the name of La Chalupa II opened on Route 33 East just east of the Collingswood Auction in the past couple of months. Perhaps the sandwich you speak of is still available there.

                                      1. re: jsfein

                                        unfortunately it seems that resto is only open for lunch. I called at night a few times and got no answer.

                                      2. re: Herm

                                        Have been to Senor Peppers a few times now. The style of cooking is still pretty much the same as it was at La Chalupa (I like the Tacos Veloces), but I've noticed the presentation has improved a bit. Finished dishes no longer look like they've been tossed into a wad of rice and shredded lettuce. The dishes taste the same though. They seem to have thickened the red and green sauces they serve with the chips, and are a little more generous with the portions of sauces. You need not worry about the name, they've pretty much avoided the Tex Mex puddles of melted cheese and red sauce. Their only concession is they have added some combo plates for the Gringos. Despite the label, most of their best authentic dishes are still listed in the Appetizer section.

                                2. If you're looking for truly authentic stuff check out West Long Branch. I just drive around until i find a place that seems straight up mexican. If they can't understand me, that's a good sign! At these places you can get stuff like, tongue taco, brain taco, intestine taco...tasty stuff you'll never find at a place like Casa Comida or Juanitos.

                                  1. I just saw a new Mexican restaurant in Freehold right next door to El Meson. It took over an Italian restaurant that's been there for ages. I forgot the name of that place and the name of this new Mexican restaurant. Has anybody been there yet?

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: wench31

                                      I believe the restaurant is called Mi Lindo. I tried it this afteroon for lunch. Although I went with the intent of ordering a salad of some kind (trying to be good after this past weekend). Instead I ordered a bowl of Pozole (and a small house salad) :). After being seated I was delivered a nice basket of chips with two salsas (one red and one green - I prefered the green). Next came the salad. The lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and carrots were all fresh. Although I wasn't given an option for dressing, I was given a nice small bowl of ranch dressing. A small amount of the dressing and some green salsa was more than enough for me. A few moments after completing the salad, a beautiful bowl of pozole was presented. While I have never eaten the dish before and therefore have no refernce point, I was very happy with the dish. From what I understand from my research online, this was a blanco pozole. The broth was clear and light. The dish consisted of a large amount of soft hominy along with pulled pork topped with pasley and a slice of lemon. While I had anticipated more of a stew instead of a soup, I was very happy with the selection. The one thing that did bother me a little was the thought of the use of lye (something I was unable to confirm as sometimes lime is used) to remove the husk from the corn (a process called nixtamalization). I got over that thought pretty fast after tasting the soup. The hominy had the consistency of little dumplings and was very pleasant. I will definitely go back and try some of the other interesting dishes.

                                      1. re: bgut1

                                        bgut1,

                                        The restaurant's name is Mi Lindo Mexico. jsfein was there last week and, like you, had positive things to say about:

                                        http://www.chowhound.com/topics/413145 .

                                        Your very descriptive review is making me hungry. lol Definitely on my "go to" list.

                                        1. re: RGR

                                          Stupid me - I thought I remembered reading about it somewhere. In my excitement to write the review, I jumped into this thread instead. As always RGR, thanks for the help. And do please go. You'll love it. Just do me a favor, don't go too far down the street or I fear you might actually find yourself in Citrus. :)

                                    2. I've tried Chilango's in Highlands and Sopa Verde in Atlantic Highlands.....both are very good, very casual. Chilangos has a bar and an outside deck. Sopa Verde is a little more Tex Mex, but the best shredded chicken tacos I've had in a long time!

                                      1. I am coming in late, but I liked Aby's in Matawan and had the WORST food ever at Juanito's. Granted, it was 3 years ago, but that meal turned me off completely. The only thing possibly good to some might be the amount of food, but they served my son "tacos" made with unseasoned ground beef dropped into a taco shell. I mean my child would have been happy w/McCormick's seasoning, and they didn't even have salt in them. I got a chicken dish that I honestly don't remember. I do know that I always take home leftovers, but I didn't finish or take home my meal or anyone's. I was VERY disappointed.
                                        t

                                        1. Thought I'd chime in... (even though I've never been to either La Tapatia or Hacienda, and they're both around the corner! lol!). I used to work at Casa Comida -- YEARS ago. Once the couple divorced and Paul left, the place went downhill, big time!! I haven't darkened the doors in a couple of years... the food stinks and they charge WAY too much for it! I'm not a big fan of Juanito's either... overpriced. What do I like? I've had really good experiences at El Meson in Freehold (though my wife wasn't crazy with the atmosphere). For our anniversary this past weekend, we tried out Chilango's in Highlands and it was SUPERB! We will be back! We also occasionally make the drive to Woodbridge for Jose Tejas... Maybe not the best, but it's just tasty food served in large portions at a good price in a cantina-type atmosphere. Someday soon we will be trying some of the little corner shops in the neighborhood (like la Hacienda)... and I'll report back, then.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: OceanGrover

                                            I'm curious, OceanGrover. What was there about the atmospherics at El Meson your wife didn't like? The interior decor is cheerful enough. But we prefer sitting on the spacious outdoor patio during the warm weather months. We had lunch there a few days ago, and they've really dressed the patio up with lots of lovely plantings and flowers.

                                            1. re: RGR

                                              I went to El Meson tonight for dinner. Once again my fajita salad with chicken was delicious. We always eat inside. I should eat outside one of these days. It's seems to be more popular.

                                          2. Stopped in at Chalupas in Red Bank tonight 12/29 and the place has changed names and portion sizes.It is now Senor Peppes. We used to order a Spicy Pork Burrito off of the Adult menu and split it. Tonight it wasn't big enough to feed a 11 year old. The salads on top and even the ingredients had changed. My son was so upset he vowed to never return. While the menu remains the same the sizes are way down. Even a bowl of refried beans is not the same. The prices remain the same though.

                                            Also stopped in Sapo Verde in Atlantic Highlands this week. Food was nuked or not prepared freshly. I guess were back to Jaunitos or driving to Freehold.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: F77

                                              How very sad! No more burritos :((

                                              I wonder what happened? I have noticed many ethnics places have closed recently. Could it be the cost of food and overhead? Fewer Mexican ppl eating out?

                                            2. Hey there....

                                              Not exactly sure where you live, but if you're around Jamesburg sometime, try out Maria's Authentic Mexican Restaurant. Some of the Mexican guys I work with go there, and so do a lot of other Mexican people, so It's safe to say they're authentic. I've had their food, and it's great. I haven't even had an opportunity to saple their more authentic dishes, but I think it's probably pretty good.

                                              The guys I work with don't liek Acapulco in Freehold, and I prefer Maria's over them.

                                              Buena Suerte!

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: construction

                                                I thought I recalled someone posting about Maria's previously. Via a search: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/389841

                                                Note: They seem to have deleted the inaccurate statement from their website about being the only Mexican restaurant within 20 miles.

                                                1. re: RGR

                                                  nope, they still make that incorrect statement!

                                                2. re: construction

                                                  Maria's is great and very authentic (although they have a few gringo items on the menu). Their Carnitas is out of this world.

                                                3. Not in Monmouth, but northern Ocean County in Point Pleasant Beach is a very authentic Mi Mexico, had take out for lunch yesterday and as ussual it was seriously yummy. Great red tamales!

                                                  7 Replies
                                                  1. re: shorebilly

                                                    Where exactly is Mi Mexico located?

                                                    1. re: Barbarella

                                                      Mi Mexico is on RT 35 south in Point Pleasant Beach, in the same strip mall as Surf Taco. Surf Taco is for California-Mex, Mi Mexico is the real deal! Had the chorizo tacos, chicken flautas, tamales and chicken tacos, so far, can't wait to try the mole!

                                                      1. re: shorebilly

                                                        I love anything in mole sauce. Plan to go there tonight. will give comments later.

                                                        1. re: Barbarella

                                                          We tried the mole at Mi Mexico, it was good but not our favorite. It came over a piece of chicken that was a little hard to pick at with the mole over it but it was ultimately ok. If the mole came on something else it would probably be better but when we asked the owner about that he didn't understand and he just kept telling us it was made with lots of peppers. We have had the tacos and enchiladas as well. The tacos were very good, enchiladas were ok. If I were to go again I would just stick to the tacos or try something similar and I would also get them to go since we live very close. The owner (I assume he is the owner he is always there) is very friendly. We had a terrible time trying to communicate with the waitresses and the owner at times though. Every time we asked about an unfamiliar item on the menu she had to go back to the owner and discuss it then come back and still not be able to explain it. We also had it take about 20 minutes to get a check one night and there was only one other table in the place. I drive by fairly often and it never seems to be crowded. I have never been to Mexico but if you are looking for authentic it seems like it probably is. We also found the green and red sauces they bring to the table pretty tasty and the prices are quite reasonable for this area of NJ anyway. If authentic is what you seek I would say it is a place worth trying. And it being BYOB with a liquor store across the street to pick up your dos equis is a bonus.

                                                          1. re: retrovertigo

                                                            We did go to Mi Mexico last night and thought it was really good. The chips are homemade and not greasy. The red salsa was a bit too spicy so the owner came out with a green one that was fine. I asked for shrimp burritos that was not actually on the menu, and was graciously told that could be done. I asked for guacamole with it. Mine was very tasty, served with great rice and refried beans. My DH had "Al Pastor" seasoned spicy pork. That did not come out as expected. It was 2 very flat pieces of pork served again with great rice and refried.. We split an order of flan too, All in all the bill came to just over $22.00.. Been to Mexico many times and found this to be very authentic and good food. .The one waitress on that night spoke English just fine no problem there. the owner and wait staff were super friendly and chatted with us for some time checking also on how everything was. We will be going back soon.

                                                            1. re: Barbarella

                                                              So glad you enjoyed it! I think the owner is charming, however, speaking a tiny bit of Spanish doesn't hurt!!!

                                                          2. re: Barbarella

                                                            Mexico Lindo in Brick has the best mole around. We were there last night. As good as ever.

                                                    2. I'm always searching for great tamales. My current favorites are at a tiny grocery store on Shrewsbury Ave in Red Bank. The store is called Juquila, although the sign may be covered with scaffolding. It's near DeForest Ave.

                                                      The tamales are central mexican style, wrapped in a banana leaf. They are small and there are four kinds. I get the red and mole. The verde have way too much heat for me. The fourth kind is wrapped in foil with no leaf -- it has chunks of chili and is incendiary. Tamales are sold only on the weekends. Get there early.

                                                      I would like to find a good source of northern mex or tex style tamales -- wrapped in corn husk. Any recommendations?

                                                      -----
                                                      Juquila
                                                      106 Shrewsbury Ave, Red Bank, NJ

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: val ann c

                                                        Juanitos Bakery, near the train station in Red Bank, sells tamales in corn husks. Both the red and green are delicious. The last time I was there, the tamales were $1 each.

                                                      2. Thanks to shorebilly for the Mi Mexico rec in Point Pleasant Beach. We went for lunch yesterday and loved it. The restaurant is humble yet clean and the friendly helpful owner obviously takes pride in his food. I had a variety of tacos with generous meat and a nice cilantro sauce. I tried the salty beef, carnitas, goat and a rec from the owner, the spiced pork which was delicious with hints of chipotle and cinnamon. I'll be working up my courage to try the pig ear and beef tounge tacos- I thought the food was very authentic. Another thing that earned points in the authenticity category is how they sprinkled queso fresco on my husband's black beans as I've had in Mexico (not cheddar or jack!) I look forward to going back for dinner. When we left, they gave us two calendars that had different images. The waitress picked them out individually and my pic was of salsas since I had asked her for the extra red and green type that they didn't automatically put on the table. Mi Mexico had the perfect combination of warm service, great food, and reasonable prices that we look for in a restaurant.

                                                        3 Replies
                                                        1. re: taste test

                                                          Taste test and Barbarella, glad you enjoyed it! I always love to support small owner operated places:)

                                                          1. re: taste test

                                                            We just tried Mi Mexico for lunch today and it is great authentic Mexican. We had a couple of "Tinga" tacos each and split a side of black beans. The tinga is a pulled chicken in a spicy red sauce with onions, served with lime and green sauce. I have a feeling that I'm going to be getting serious cravings for these!

                                                            1. re: crzldy

                                                              The comments on this thread inspired us to try Mi Mexico last night for an early dinner. Simply put, we thought the food was wonderful! (The fact that it is located a couple doors away from the awful Surf Taco was a great irony.)

                                                              We tried 5 different tacos -- spicy pork, salty beef, fried pork, chorizo, and the previously noted "tinga." The spicy pork and salty beef were our favorites. We also tried the shrimp el diablo and agreed that the shrimp were cooked perfectly and the sauce, though quite hot, not overpowering.

                                                              The place is definately the kind of storefront, authentic Mexican we were hoping to find. The owner and staff were friendly and attentive, but it is one of those places that make you think about learning spanish!

                                                              I hope others take a chance and try the place as it was almost empty at 6 last night and I would love to see it stay.

                                                          2. Tried out El Monterey in Asbury Park on Rt71 next to the Salvation Army Store. Food is really good. Large Menu...all in Spanish, prices are reasonable, huge sitting area. BYO, decor is plain but interesting. Chips and salsas before meal make it worth going back for. Everything is Mexican including the sodas. Don't believe they sell anything gringo. Only complaint is they nuke the whole plate in order to melt the cheeses which...nukes everything.

                                                            1. Have you ever tried El Monterrey in Asbury Park on Main St? (by the firehouse; the outside is bright orange). They have received excellent reviews and it is definately authentic (...they do not use a microwave to melt the cheese). The atmosphere is charming, friendly, and casual. They even have free delivery and a juke box where you can choose mexcian music, watch the soccer game on the large screen TV, or simply relax and enjoy the food. My favorites are the tinga, anything with their shrimp, chilaquiles verdes, their sopa de res, and of course their chips and salsa. For dessert their flan is excellent and their authentic mexcian beverages are sweet and delicious. It is BYOB. You should give it a try. Let me know what you think.

                                                              1. I have really tired of the menu at El Meson most likely due to the frequency of my meals there over the past few years. I now try to limit my visits to dinner on Fridays and Saturdays when the restaurant offers specials. For the most part, I have been very pleased with the specials and last night's meal was one of the best yet. I had the rack of lamb in a mole type sauce (but I don't think it was mole -- wish I had paid closer attention to the menu). I wasn't asked how I wanted it cooked so before the waiter walked away I asked for it medium rare. It came out perfectly cooked and was absolutely delicious. This was one night when I wish El Meson served tortillas with its entrees because the sauce would have been perfect to scoop up on a warm tortilla. My wife also ordered a special, broiled lobster tails. Again, I didn't pay attention to the menu and don't recall how it was prepared, but it was in a white, garlicky sauce with a real heat punch (I usually don't find any of the food at El Meson to have any kick to it, but this dish did). Her meal was also excellent. Both entrees were under $25 and well worth it. I hate fighting the crowds at El Meson on Friday and Saturday nights, but for these specials in particular it was worth it.

                                                                2 Replies
                                                                1. re: jsfein

                                                                  Jsfein, we were there last night, too! Too bad I don't know what you look like...I would have said hello. I had the chicken special with the mole sauce. It had a kick to it. Good meal and I love the black beans on the side. Yum.
                                                                  We try to always get there early. Last night was closer to 6 and we only had to wait a few minutes. On the way out the line was much longer.

                                                                  1. re: Pink Pepper

                                                                    We probably passed each other, as we arrived just before 6 and luckily were seated right away (table with 3 kids with Gameboys and sleeping baby). Agree about the black beans, they were really good and I prefer them over the refried they serve with the regular menu entrees. I almost went with the chicken special (that's probably where I remember the mole sauce from). Glad you enjoyed.

                                                                2. can someone compare el meson to jaunitos.. i love el meson, and go quite often. but if the food at jaunitos is as good id love to try it

                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: boodie1821

                                                                    We always enjoy Chilango's in highlands. Very good food and a whole wall of tequilas. A favorite of "the Boss" also.

                                                                    1. re: boodie1821

                                                                      boodie, there is NO comparison to be made. Juanitos, in my opinion, has gone steadily down hill. NOTHING has any flavor at Juanitos except the salsa that you get with the chips. The rice is bland, the refried beans are bland, everything is just about bland. We started eating at La Chalupa down the street 3 years ago and what a difference! Of course, La Chalupa has changed hands and is now Senior Peppers. Since it changed hands, we thought that we would give Juanitos another shot. Well, we should have gone to Taco Bell. That's all I'll say. We recently tried Senior Peppers and it was not very good. I ordered by favorite mexican dish, cheese enchiladas, and they were terrible. I can make better enchiladas at home and I'm Irish! Getting back to your question, El Meson is fantastic! We just starting eating there in the last year and EVERY single meal has been fabulous! Please, don't waste your time with Juanitos. Stick with a restaurant that knows how to cook!