3/1/11 Tacos, Pupusas, Roasted Chicken etc. in Chelsea (and Somerville) ;Cont'd.
- opinionatedchef Mar 1, 2011 10:42 PM
well, beachgirl, thanks to you, we had quite the late wintry afternoon in Chelsea. (btw, true to your experience, no pork/adobado taco filling anywhere!(I was told at our last stop, Taqueria Montecristo(TM)in Somerville- that they had had it earlier in the day!)
Las Carnitas de Montecristo(LCM) in Chelsea
--My Love just SCARFED the beef gordita. very good.Two thick masa cakes sandwiched with res, cheese,crema, cuke, radish. Sin lechuga, gracias.
--Terrific papusas; for me they tasted identical to TM in Somerville. Perfect unctuous filling mixture of pastey pork/beans/cheese.
--Good res and chicken tacos; chicken moist and flavorful(rub/marinade, then grilled)- best I've had by far.
--Really excellent beans; best I've had in all these places I've been trying. Like a world apart. Hard for me to accept that beans can be this good and involve no comino. Funny, when I ordered some for take out and they asked if 'liquido' was what I was wanting, I said yes bec. I thought of their whole beans being in a liquid. Got home to learn the meaning of liquido ho ho. But they actually taste identical to me; maybe they took the whole ones and just pureed them. Truly amazing.
The other new discovery for us was these jugos that you have occasionally mentioned. I had always figured these fruit juices would be wicked sweet so I never ordered them, but after little tastes today at LCM. we both had one ; the Melon (cantaloupe) and Maranon (cashew fruit- who knew??) tasted like 'fruit fruit and nothing but the fruit'- plus a little sugar , plus water. yummmmmy! Now I gotta start making my own for the summer! I've bought frozen passion fruit and guanabana puree before; can I buy these other 2 from the latin markets? btw, in case anyone wants to learn about maranon/cashew apple:
Latino Restnt (next door)- while their carnitas texture was the best (less cooked)of all the ones I've had, they were my least fav. because the pig taste was predominant and I tasted no spice mixture. (Maybe they're not Salvadoran?)Their beef stew was reddish/mahogany and looked tasty.
Pollos a la brasa El Chalan- Well I guess this is now our go-to roast chicken spot. While we have been regular customers of Pollo las Brasas Machu Picchu(MP) for a number of years, I do prefer El Chalan's spicing. It actually tastes exactly like a DC/VA suburbs Peruvian place called Pollo Rico which delighted my parents weekly for some 20+ yrs. I also prefer the light green aji that comes w/ this chicken- not very hot ,and very flavorful- over the yellow aji at machu picchu. I am bugged that Chalan won't sell you just a chicken; it's $16 instead of the $13 at MP, w/ or w/o the fries (or subpar yellow rice or white rice) and salad. But I am really psyched that I have found a Pollo Rico match in Boston. This is tremendous!
Taqueria El Charrito - wicked busy little place. chef/owner's? 3 kids everywhere. chicharrones had some good seasoning but v. tough and much fattier and not as well spiced as Montecristo somerville. Beef tacos good. chicken overpoached/shredded/not for me.I watched the young son of the patron eating his pupusa by first picking off and eating the top masa layer!, and the filling looked identical to that at LCM, so they must be good here.
We hit Taqueria Montecristo in Somerville as our last stop.
I must confess, I am really touched by the sweetness of the chef/owner of this place; she is always so nice to us, coming out of the kitchen to say hi w/ her chef/son. We picked up some containers of just chicharrones and carne asada (both to accompany our freezer-stocked masa-only mulitas from Lupita. Of all the places we've tried, the carne asada at TM is still second [tied w/ El Pelon] only to La Verdad. So much flavor- beef and marinade- moist and not chopped-to-heck. For those of you who think you love the carne asada at Tacos El Amigo and Tacos Lupita, you gotta try TM! Also, their chicharrones are the best I've had so far, much better seasoned and with a lot more meat on them too. Raw chicharrones= uncured slab bacon?
beach girl, thank you so much again for all your help with these new additions to our Boston culinary favs. What would we do without you?!
2197 Commonwealth Ave., Brighton, MA 02135
Pollos A La Brasa El Chalan
405 Chelsea St, Boston, MA 02128
1 Lansdowne St, Boston, MA 02215
146 Broadway, Somerville, MA 02145
Taqueria El Charrito
128 Pearl St, Chelsea, MA 02150
Las Carnitas De Montecristo
902 Broadway, Chelsea, MA 02150