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May 21, 2007 06:23 AM

OK, we've heard a lot, but here's my Sabor A Mexico experience.

We dropped by after making the rounds at the Venice Art Walk. It was around 4:30, and there were only a few people there.

We ordered:
Original Huarache
Veggie Burrito, replace the lettuce with more beans(me)
Chilaquiles with carne asada and corn tortillas (him)
quesadilla with squash blossoms and the one with mushrooms
lengua taco (him)
beef taco (him)

all to go.

In retrospect, we were insane to order all that food. Art walks can skew your perspective.

We got s basket of chips and visited the salsa bar. The salsas were all amazing, I also liked the pickled peppers. No wonder Mr Piper picked a peck. The chips, however, were very greasy, even for fried chips.

The food took FOREVER. Yes, I know it's all fresh made, but there is a way to get food on the grille and out in decent time, if you know when to put everyting on and how to cook multiple dishes and get everything out on time. Diner cooks are masters of this. Sabor A MExico seems to think that cooking one thing at a time is the way to go. Makes the wait longer, and wastes all that open grill space. I drained a large, yummy horchata while waiting.

Also, as I watched, I saw the owner, John, start plating our order for in house. Eventually the cashier noticed, and he scraped it into to-go boxes.

Finally, about 30-40 minutes later, our pile of food was ready. We were worried, because the chilaquiles box said "pollo", but a peek inside revealed asada. We rushed home to find the power out, and sat down to feast.

The Burrito was devine, sooo good with lovely refried black beans. The hurache didn't do well to have traveled, I think fresh would have been better, but the flavor was fabulous, and man, it was BIGFOOT sized. But, a little over-greasy.

My Husband loved the chilaquiles, and I got a few tastes, but he kept mumbling "Can't stop eating them!" which he only does at Rahel, which he loves.

He also inhaled his tacos, and really loved the lengua. Tongue is a newish thing for him, but you wouldn't know it from the way the taco went "poof".

The quesadillas were a disappointment. They were dripping with grease, which masked the flavor.

Fried food shouldn't be that greasy. the trick to a crisp fried item is to turn the oil up as high as it will take. These poor things were swimming in a pool of oil in the box. I mean a POOL.

Now, Sabor uses veggie oil, which can't take high heat and is good for me, because I am allergic to peanut oil (which CAN take blazing temps). Still, even veggie oil can be high enough to prevent grease bombs.

There were tons and tons of chips, too.

We had leftovers, obviously.

I think we'll avoid the quesadillas from now on, and order less. But it was amazing! We will go back! OH yes, we will.

All that for about $30.

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  1. Are you sure the grease in the quesadillas was not from the cheese? That happens alot when there is alot of cheese on togo quesadillas, that has been my observation.

    12 Replies
    1. re: Burger Boy

      Not from the cheese. No amount of cheese could leave such a veritable lake of grease! There was cheese inside and a little bit on top, and a large body of grease. Over or around a 1/4 cup puddled in the container. I kid you not.

      But don't let that dissuade you from the fabulous food.!

      1. re: Diana

        how do they fry quesadillas, i always see them just throw the tortilla on the grill and then add cheese and fold over?

        1. re: Burger Boy

          No, these kind are definitely fried in a deep frier. Mine had a film of oil on it, although I wouldn't call it a pool. I think they need to blot as well as drain.

          1. re: Chowpatty

            Never had it that way. Like a fried ham & cheese empanada or some middle eastern places fry their boereg, interesting. Is it big or small? Empenada size?

            1. re: Burger Boy

              like a small empanada.

              Mine were definitely in a pool. Gosh, no one believes me! I wish I;d taken a sanpshot!

              1. re: Diana

                I believe, just never had a quesadilla made/prepared that way. Burrito King does a quesadilla with yellow cheese and chiles and it is so greasy good, they fold it into a pocket like thing. Yummy good! Sorry you got a grease BOMB! I wonder if it has a different name and they are calling it that or maybe in certain regions of Mexico that is how it is prepared.

                1. re: Burger Boy

                  I think your second assption is the correct one. SAM calls it a Quesadilla de estila de something or other./

                  1. re: Diana

                    this one place I used to go to made corn quesadillas with meat and called them mulitas, I think? Confussing, try a papusa with squash blossom from the papusa place at the sunday farmers market in Hollywood, you should like that much better.

                    1. re: Burger Boy

                      I'll second that pupusa rec... memorable...

                  2. re: Burger Boy

                    The way quesadillas are made at SAM is the authentic original mexican qesadilla, made with corn masa, and deep fried. I love their quesadillas, I have never had a problem with oily quesadillas there, but I believe that can happen, if they are not fried the right way, also it is better to eat them as soon as they are ready. It is true that the food takes too long, and I also think that it is the way they cook, it seems like they cook things one by one. I still like SAM very much, and will go back.

                  3. re: Diana

                    They're the quesadillas estilo DF, I'm pretty sure. I ordered them once and they weren't greasy. But then one time I went and ordered them and they were way greasy. And Diana I totally agree with you about the wait, they need a better system...the food is so good, but they go about preparing it the wrong way. First we'll cook the burrito. Then we'll cook the quesadilla, then we'll cook the chilaquiles. I would go more often, but sometimes I can't wait that long.

                    1. re: writergirl

                      Another poster mentioned in one of the other threads that he talked with the owner, who intends to open another location if things keep going well. Hopefully the intended location will be more convenient in all ways. If and when this happens, the lines will probably demand he open another place!

        2. gotta completely agree about the quesadillas.
          something about their cooking method turned them into grease bombs.
          i did love the veggie burrito, though.

          (do we know if they use the type of veggie oil that costco sells that contains a combination of regular vegetable oil and partially hydrogenated vegetable oil (the packaging just calls it vegetable oil)?

          1. Look what I found , a description of the quedsadilla you got. It is from a piece by Jonathon Gold in the LA Weekly.

            huitlacoche quesadillas — fried turnovers stuffed with musky, jet-black corn fungus — out of the stone-faced woman who mans the fragrant fry cart stationed just outside the restaurant’s entrance. The last time I was by, I ordered a quesadilla stuffed with flor de calabaza, the sauté of squash blossoms and vegetables that is one of El Huarache’s specialties.


            4 Replies
            1. re: Burger Boy

              ummm..yes. That's pretty much it.

                1. re: Burger Boy

                  Black corn fungus? I think I saw an unforgettable picture of corn smut in my high school biology book. I don't know if I'd want to eat this, but I'm thinking about it....

                  1. re: katkoupai

                    Hi Kat, don't be too worried. Evidently, this is the Mexican-equivalent of a French or Italian truffle. I have yet to have the fortune to try this apparent delicacy, but if you trust our local comestible divinity Jonathan Gold, you might change your mind.

                    Go to KCRW's website, click on "Talk," then on "Evan Kleiman," and listen to the webcast from this past Saturday, where J. Gold is a regular guest.