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NoVA - Atlacatl reports? other El Salvadorean?

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hi, i grew up in Alexandria, but have been living far away for years (NYC for the last 8), but i have fond memories of Atlacatl.

next week i'll be in the area, and meeting some friend's for dinner (just 3 or 4 of us, Saturday night) and i was wondering if Atlacatl is still a solid choice???

i did some research here on chowhound and google, and what i've gleaned is that it's not as good as it once was, but is still a good, solid choice.

dishes i remember fondly from Atlacatl of 15+ years ago:
- pupusas, of course
- fried yucca chunks
- plaintain served with refried beans and crema
- tamales
- camorones con crema (served shell-on, and lick your plate delectable)

if not Atlacatl, where would you send me?

thanks,
alekz

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  1. If you don't mind carryout, the first 4 items you mentioned are excellent at Taqueria El Charrito Caminante, which most hounds simply refer to as TECC. It is on Washington Blvd just to the south of Pershing Drive and a few blocks north of Rte 50/Arlington Blvd.

    As for the camerones, which I also loved at Atlacatl, I don't have a suggestion, since we haven't had a regular sit-down meal in a Salvadoran restaurant in a long time.

    2 Replies
    1. re: bacchante

      thanks ... we're looking for sitdown and stay, preferably with table-service ... at least not dine and dash. comfort may have to trump deliciousness a little bit here. thanks for the carry-out tip though ... i'll definitely refer my parents to it, and maybe try it sometime myself.

      is lack of comments from you on Atlacatl because you don't like it anymore, or has it just been too long since you've been to even presuppose the current state of quality?

      1. re: charlie_b

        It's just been too long since I've been there to comment.

    2. All the things you mentioned about Atlacatl will be pretty much the same. It is still probably the best Salvadoran in NoVa.

      1. TECC is really mexican, though they do have pupusas.

        I think Atlacatl may be suffering from radically increased competition more than a drop off in quality. There are so many Salvadoran option now, though other than Abis they may not be pleasant on a Saturday night. Las Delicias and Rancho Migieulano (I've butchered the spelling, but it's across from El Pollo Rey) are probably better than Atlacatl foodwise, but at both the music will be LOUD and waitresses will have on go-go boots and miniskirts.