Thursday, January 21, 2016

Los Mexicanos: Excellence Without Pretention

The Belle of Gulf Boulevard and I got a late start in our quest for dinner yesterday. It was around 6:30, but we figured our chances of getting seated would be fairly good since many of the early-bird diners would be clearing out. Wrong!

There was a 30 minute wait at J.D.'s, 20 or more at Keegan's, and packed parking lots at a few other venues. We were verging on heading home and just gorging on bread and water when I spied a couple of parking spots in front of Los Mexicanos Mexican restaurant at 301 Gulf Boulevard in Indian Rocks. We had driven past Los Mexicanos on numerous occasions, but for some reason we never stopped ... until last night.

We were greeted at the door and guided to an awaiting booth where salsa, chips and menus promptly appeared. Los Mexicanos has a full bar so we decided to put the barkeep to work whipping up a couple of traditional Margaritas.

As the tequila began warming our bodies and mellowing our minds I surveyed our surroundings. I felt at ease and comfortable ... like being transported back to some of our favorite dining spots in Mexico: the no-name place on the road to Coba, Denis in San Miguel on the island of Cozumel, any number of quaint venues in Punta Bete or Batopilas.

There was nothing particularly surprising on the rather extensive menu, just the usual bill of fare one would expect in a Mexican or Tex-Mex restaurant here in the States. There were at least six vegetarian items for those who eschew meat, but I must agree with John Cleese, "If God did not intend for us to eat animals, then why did he make them out of meat?" 

And, meat it was for the two of us. Mi esposa chose the Enchiladas Rancheras: three steak enchiladas with ranchero sauce, fresh cheese, sour cream, rice and beans.

Said she, "The beef was tender and juicy, the salsa verde was savory without being muy caliente." The rice was rice, the beans were beans, but this was a most filling and flavorful dish.

The Carnitas Rancheras was my choice for a main course with fried pork chunks served with rice, beans and salsa.

The fried pork was tender to the tooth and bathed in a perfectly seasoned salsa roja that complimented the arroz amarillo.

The food, adult beverages, prices, surroundings and the service was excellent without being pretentious. With four Margaritas our total for the evening came to a very pleasant $40.66. We tacked on an additional 20% for our server Eric.

I can definitely see Los Mexicanos being one of our regular dining spots on the beach.

Los Mexicanos Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato  

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