El Zocalo Oaxaqueño in Gilroy
At Guelaguetza Wine Country last June in Santa Rosa, I’d tried the molotes from this restaurant’s booth. I found out that the operators were from Salinas and had just opened a restaurant in Gilroy, El Zocalo Oaxaqueño.
The mole negro for the molotes had more restraint in sweetness and greater complexity of spicing, making it not so dominated by chocolate and char, than most examples around here.
In December, I finally had a chance to seek out the restaurant with my mom. When I pulled up to the address, I realized I’d been to this location 10 years ago when it was Siete Mares. The windows of the storefront were now painted with day of the week specials. The menu retained the mariscos of El 7 Mares and added in Oaxacan dishes.
Housemade, thick tortilla chips were very good and the fiery chile de arbol table salsa was outstanding. A few weeks later I would return to buy a pint of the salsa for a dinner party. By chance, we were here on Día de la Virgen de Guadalupe and had our choice of complimentary champurrado or café de olla. Both were excellent examples.
For Mom, one taco de carnitas, $2. The handmade corn tortilla was tender as a cloud and made of fresh masa. The richly flavored carnitas were silky smooth and crisp around the edges. Topped with cilantro, onion and roasted tomato salsa, this was a great taco. Not only delicious, this two-buck taco was grande. My mother ate it with a fork, since she felt the taco was too large to pick up with her hands.
I had the Mole coloradito plate, $11, and here it’s served with either chicken or PORK. Puerco en coloradito, score! Huge chunks of tender roast pork bathed in my favorite color of Oaxacan mole were served with fluffy rice, lardy beans, and tortillas hechas a mano.
We tried to return in February, only to find the restaurant closed with a liquor license transfer posted. It seems that it had not yet transferred El 7 Mares license. Per the ABC’s site, the new license was issued last month.
I’d love to know if the restaurant has re-opened. I’ve tried calling all the phone numbers for the place that I could find on the web:
None of these are currently in use for the place. If anyone knows if it has opened again or has a way to contact owners Erika Lopez or Noelia Santos, please let us know.