Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > San Diego >
May 4, 2011 02:55 PM

Cinco de Mayo...

Hacienda de Vega for me..this place kicks serious ass on food and drinks!
What are your plans?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Tofu nacho's... were they? You must have a picture, though be it a black & white glossy, of your groupies to share, right?

    4 Replies
    1. re: cstr

      You crack me up and white glossy and Tofu Nacho's..
      I probably was dancing all night next to you with your powder blue leisure suit and Jerry curl, there's a visual..

      1. re: Beach Chick

        Remember that classy leisure suit, one of many I owned, was 100% polyester!

        1. re: cstr

          You had to buy an iron in the 80's for the Brooks Brother shirts since they didn't come in a poly blend..only Pima cotton. ; )

          Whatcha eating today in the Mex department?

          1. re: Beach Chick

            Carne Asada party in North County.

          1. re: foodiechick

   two have fun and report back!

            1. re: Beach Chick

              I really like the Wine Vault. Their version of Cinco de Mayo was certainly a stellar effort with far more hits than misses.

              Dishes I really liked:

              Yucatan tropical fruit margarita was very good

              Chicharones with harissa, lime and fluer de sel

              Pork Belly with fried avocado, chipotle ailoi and pickled onions (it's better if you get a bite of each all together)

              Carnitas Quesadilla

              Chipotle braised short ribs with charred onion puree and pepper chutney

              Tres Leches Cake and the chocolate with the churros

              Dishes that didn't work for me

              Sagrita consume (weak cucumber flavor)

              Classic hand shaken margarita (undrinkable for me)

              The chile verde on the squash blossom (too much black pepper and cumin)

              NY strip steak with pepita mole, marble potato hash and braised greens (the mole was actually a pipian and had F-A-R too much cumin in it, potato hash was virtually non-existent on the plate)

              Horchata ice cream tasted more of canela than horchata

              Portions on the first 4 courses were miniscule, 3 of the first 4 were small even for an amuse bouche. They were, however, extremely generous with the booze and served w-a-y more alcohol than food. To their credit they told each table as they sat down to not feel obligated to finish all the drinks.

              1. re: DiningDiva

                Good to know about the booze...why was the margarita almost undrinkable?

                1. re: foodiechick

                  It was bitter. There was a flavor in there I couldn't identify that I found very unappealing. It tasted like it was made with sweet & sour mix and not fresh lime juice.Color was also rather artificial

                  1. re: DiningDiva

                    This effect can happen with real lime juice if it is combined with tap water or shaken with ice made from the same- you gotta use distilled water to avoid off flavors in homeade sour mix.

                    Thanks for the great report.


                2. re: DiningDiva

                  We really like WV but even for their prices some of their tasting menu portions are too small and we often end up going somewhere else for some extra dishes.

                  1. re: honkman

                    I didn't nend to go anywhere else for an extra dish or two, but because some of the portions are really tiny, it's hard to really enjoy the flavors. One bite and their gone. I *think* the crab tostada was good, but it was smaller than my thumbnail and was gone in one bite, how could I tell?!?!???

                  2. re: DiningDiva

                    Agree with you on most points after our dinner tonight. My 2-cents:

                    Got the recipe for the tropical margarita, it was fantastic, but...Hello sweet and sour mix. Big surprise.

                    Thought the cadllac marg tasted a bit harsh because of too much tequila, couldn't taste the sweet and sour, but you are right about the artificial color.

                    I thought the most cumin overload was on the pork belly, gave my portion to Mr. FC.

                    Shortribs are shortribs.

                    Loved the Sangrita (even though inauthentic), ours had great cucumber flavor.

                    They absolutely ruined the squash blossoms. Overwhelmed with sauce and mine was a salt bomb. Chicharones = amazing.

                    Loud guy next to us complained about the tres-leche cake and how it was SOOOO much better at the same dinner last was fine.

                    On actual Cinco de Mayo, not as overbooked as I anticipated. Overall, good job. Probably go back next year.

                    1. re: foodiechick

                      FC, I like WV but, it appears that they bombed on the Cinco menu, you're being too easy on them. Another reason why I stick to going there on just a regular dining day. The best part of your review was hearing that you threw the over spiced porkbelly in the 'dog dish' for Mr. FC, we men do know our roll when dinng with spouse!

                      1. re: cstr

                        "dog dish" LOL. Remember that old cereal commericial, "give it to Mikey, he'll eat anything". If the shoe fit...

                        Actually, I think he was worried that he wasn't going to get enough to eat.

                      2. re: foodiechick

                        I originally tried to make a res for the 5th but they said they were fully booked so that's why we went on the 4th.

                        Sounds like they were pretty inconsistent. Our squash blossom was fine except the sauce had too much cumin, but it wasn't too salty. I didn't detect any cumin in the pork belly, that was a pretty successful dish on the 4th.

                        The tropical margarita was very good, liked it a lot. Best non-traditional margarita I've ever had was a coconut margarita at Augilar y Sol (now sadly closed) in Mexico City. I'm not sure the problem with the Cadillac margarita was too much tequila as much as it was bad sweet and sour.

                        In spite of the missteps our meal on the 4th wasn't that bad. I'd go again

                      3. re: DiningDiva

                        Even though Wine Vault's special event menus (Mardi Gras, Oktoberfest, beer dinners, etc.) seem to me less consistent overall than their regular nights, they're also often more fun and creative. And while sometimes I miss the wine pairings, it can be nice to have a variety of drinks (here, tequila, beer, two margaritas, and a spiked coffee).

                        We didn't think they bombed at all. We didn't like the squash blossom, chicharones, or hanger steak that much, but thought everything else was very good (well, I thought the churro was only ok).

                        The Cucapa Pale Ale they served was pretty interesting for a Mexican beer. We went on the 3rd and also disliked the bitter "classic" margarita the most. I still drank it, but that says less about the margarita than it does about me.

                        1. re: CTDub

                          I, too, thought the Cucapa was pretty good. I know the U/T is not the easiest site to use, but they did a story about the guy that started and runs Cucapa that was pretty interesting. You might be able to find the article in the U/T archives, or possibly by Googling for it. Cucapa has pretty wide distribution in SD and isn't that hard to find. I think some of their other products are better than the IPA, or let's just say I prefer the Honey Amber Ale to the IPA :-)


                          1. re: DiningDiva

                            Cute website. I like the little bee and Chupacabras animations.

                            I'd seen that article last summer but couldn't remember the name well enough to remember if it was the same brewery. Thanks for the reminder.


                3. Oh no, BC, you deleted all your old great Cinco de Mayo memories in the original post. Or did I dream that?

                  My work has a catered festival outside on Friday afternoon for Cinco...nearly every year I think they book it a day late to save on $ or they just plain book too late. It's all you can eat along with a couple of (hey now!) drink tickets! I'll wear a big hat, I'm sure.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: FireFlyFiftyFive

                    Good eye FireFly..
                    I guess my own visual of Daisy Duke's and Corona Tube Top was even too much for me to visualize and put in print..hee hee
                    Have fun FFF and party like the rock star you are!

                  2. BC, I thought you'd appreciate this one. So appropriate for today

                    "Only he knows why the Mariachi band won't stop smiling"

                    1. Hey Beach Chick how was the Hacienda for Cinco de Mayo? I love that place more for atmosphere than food and the Zombie-like service although the parilla and margs are tasty. Was there last weekend for some margs and I like the new outdoor bar area.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Island

                        Didn't go..
                        Made tacos and Pacifico's...that were outstanding!
                        I always get the Queso de Vega which is so good..served with guac and corn/flour torts..
                        3 mini tostado's..both app's are filling for 2 and a cadillac marg and a DosXX beer.
                        I always speak Spanish to the servers and they've known me for can be zombie like but I never let it go down that road.
                        The salsas are good and that green grass tasting one is different and good.
                        Gorgeous place and I'll have to check out the new outdoor bar.
                        Take my lead with the app's and speak a little Spanish and see if that gets you a little more love..
                        ; )