Pastores - Quick Report
On Sunday, two friends and I had a very late breakfast at Pastores. One friend had huevos rancheros, other friend and I had chilaquiles with eggs. For rainy, lazy Sundays, I think this might be the best restaurant breakfast in the city. The dishes were very similar, the main difference being that the huevos rancheros had two soft corn tortillas, while the chilaquiles were fried strips of tortilla. Unlike the the chilequiles at Primavera, the fried tortillas here don't seem to be soaked for very long in the sauce before they are served. The sauce is also wetter than at the Primavera stand - so they are very different chilaquiles experiences, but both are great.
All of us had the same mild red sauce on our dishes, and extra was served on the side, along with a bowl of the more spicy green sauce. Both sauces are complex and full tasting - the cooks know how to use chiles to their full flavor potential. The eggs were cooked perfectly, with firm whites and runny yolks. Rice was pillowy and flavorful, beans were cooked just right.
After cleaning my plate, I felt full, but also more healthy and awake. It's simple food, but it's cooked really really well.
As we got in the car, one friend, who was visiting from out of town, remarked that he could have easily eaten a whole extra plate.
3486 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110
I can not exaggerate how much I love that place, or Irma, the owner. I've tried three or four dishes, but keep coming back to the wonderful chilaquiles. I'm hoping she is open on holidays again this year--last year Pastores was open on Christmas day and New Year's day.
your chilaquiles were served with red sauce? i've been there just once and they came with a green sauce. but they were absolutely delicious. the fried tortillas were a bit dry until mixed with the sauce and the egg yolks, but merged beautifully, and the beans really stood out for me. god, i have to go back there. and the eggs were perfectly cooked, too. it's such a gift when cooks get the basics down right. beans. rice. eggs. salt! this place is a gem.
The red sauce is the mild sauce, and the green sauce is the spicy sauce. So it depends on how spicy you order your dish at the beginning I think.
That said, the green sauce isn't *too* spicy, and the red sauce wasn't completely mild either. We were served extra bowls of both sauces with our meal, and I think both are delicious.
I went this morning for breakfast--though the hours at Pastores are touch-and-go, they've been open Christmas Day and New Year's Day for the last couple of years. Last New Year's Day, Irma, the chef/owner, was my salvation when she bought and juiced a pineapple from the shop next door after I mentioned that my tequila hangover might kill me.
This morning both I and my friend ordered the chilaquiles--one plate mild, the other medium. The difference was not discernable (both green sauce), but both of us loved them; like David said, "it's simple food, cooked really well." The plate comes with a choice of whole beans or refried; we had both, but I think I prefer the seasoned refried beans.
The place was empty, probably in part because it looked closed from the outside. A Cantinflas marathon played on the old television parked in the loft space above the dining room. It was an ideal way to start 2009.