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Jan 27, 2005 03:28 PM

Lamont - Jacalita's? El Pueblo?

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A number of years ago the original Jacalita's in Lamont sold its building and name (I think there was a court case about this), moved a short distance away, and became El Pueblo. The name Jacalita's remained dormant. A recent post recommended Jacalita's for its Mexican food. Is there now a real Jacilita's? Or is the poster merely referring to El Pueblo by its former name - as I sometimes do myself? (I write this from our home in Maine; we're gearing up for a trip to the Bakersfield area next month. Any more Hound suggestions?)

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  1. We're heading through tomorrow and were planning to visit El Jacalito.

    Very curious to know the story behind El Pueblo and El Jacalito, what their specialties are, and most importantly-- which serves better quality food.

    Mr Taster

    1. GOOD LORD, El Jacalito!

      Whatever mojo they had in 2005 appears to be long gone (or at the very least, is in hiding).

      The chips and salsa were the only enjoyable part of the meal. Clearly homemade, a dark, ruddy red with flecks of charred pepper and fresh onion and cilantro. Good stuff.

      Then the pain began.

      We ordered the carne asada plate from the "favorites" menu. Waitress asked how we wanted the steak cooked and we said medium. She asked if we wanted flour or corn tortillas. I asked her if the corn tortillas were hand made, and her laugh of bemusement should have been my signal to leave. We expected char grilled beef. Instead we got a slab of well done shoe leather, full of gristle, and pan fried. No char. Guacamole and pico de gallo were freshly made and fine. Standard refried beans and rice, with an inexplicable cheese enchilada in the middle.

      Worse was the shrimp dish we ordered, a daily special. Previously frozen, overcooked, swimming in a tomato sauce with overcooked onions and peppers. Same beans and rice.

      Alblondigas broth was salty, but the meatballs were homemade and fine.

      Soft grilled chicken taco was dry and overstuffed. Crispy beg tacos were serviceable.

      I wish someone would contribute some clarity here. If the old El Jacalito is El Pueblo, I'd really, REALLY like to know. I'm left wondering if I simply ordered wrong, since there were glimpses of potential there. The salsa really was very good.

      By the way, Superior Dairy in Hanford is flipping great as ever. No downhill alert there, to be sure.

      Mr Taster

      3 Replies
      1. re: Mr Taster

        The "alblondigas" broth you speak of must have been the lightly coloured one, right?

        1. re: Tripeler

          Ablondigas broth was a rust color, like a minestrone.

          Mr Taster

          1. re: Mr Taster

            I was joking about your spelling: alblondigas. I believe it is albondigas -- no "blond" in there -- so I wondered if it was somehow blond in colour.