3727 S. Mendenhall Rd.
After scoring some awesome art at The Price is Right, Warren and I decided to take the monkeys (Satchel, 5 and Jiro, 3) to Las Delicias. I've heard rumors and soliloquies about its yumminess and cheapness. It's located out on Mendenhall near Winchester, which is where I actually grew up. Needless to say, the area has changed a lot in the last twenty years. It is currently the epicenter of a thriving hispanic community.
Las Delicias is in an old Subway restaurant bay in a small strip mall. It has retained the bright yellow booths and wood laminate tables and counters, but sets itself apart with an added navy blue floral carpeting. Fake, but very real looking, plants hang from the ceiling, and a few 3D paintings dot the walls. When you walk in, you get a nice view of the grill and the pastor, slow-cooked pork similar (identical?) in appearance to a shwarma rotisserie.
The very friendly waitress informed us that we could seat ourselves, so naturally we chose a spot near the restrooms. Although many friends have told us about Las Delicias, we were the only gringos dining there at 7:30 this evening. The menu was in both English and Spanish, and our waitress seemed to understand our English. Las Delicias doesn't serve the typical chips and salsa or frozen treats like margaritas (it's BYOB). They specialize in fresh, cheap traditional Mexican fare like tacos, burritos, tortas, and quesadillas.
The monkeys were pretty jacked up from the Sprite they consumed at David Lusk and very near starving. Satchel was so hungry and cranky that he couldn't even have a conversation about what he wanted to eat. I went out on a limb and ordered him two steak tacos (served on corn tortillas) minus the onions and cilantro with added cheese ($2.10 each). For Jiro I went with a safety cheese quesadilla ($1.75 and served in a 8" flour tortilla) and refried beans ($2.00). I got an order of guacamole ($3.50) and the Alambre Plate ($5.99) which consisted of grilled steak, green pepper, onion, bacon, and cheese with 7 small corn tortillas. Warren, always the wild man, ordered the most expensive thing on the menu: The All-in-One Plate for $6.99. It was the same as mine, but also had marinated pork, pork chop, and two extra corn tortillas.
In the few short moments that we had to wait for our food, we enjoyed the most excellent music playing. We heard such classics and Love Hurts and Crimson and Clover. At first I thought it was a radio station, because of the 15 second intro of about ten songs that played prior to the ten songs actually playing, but later I saw one of the waitresses changing a CD. (My musician friend in the know says the owner made the CD and that it's Nazareth's version of Love Hurts and Tommy James and the Shondelles' Crimson and Clover.)
Our food came out fast and hot. Satchel was psyched when he saw his steak tacos, thank goodness, and dug right in. He went from super whiney to "Oh man, this is good" and "Thanks mom, for ordering this for me," in about 2 minutes. His tacos had both white and yellow cheese and were cooked until golden brown.
Jiro was equally thrilled with his refried beans, which also had cheese, and ate them at lightening speed. He then ate about half of his quesadilla before starting in on needing a quarter for the candy machine conveniently located right behind us.
Warren and I were both happy with our special plates. The meat, peppers, & onions were grilled to perfection and smothered with cheese. (I actually thought it was a bit too much cheese, but still yummy.) We happily filled our tortillas and alternately supplemented the meat/onion/pepper mixture with one of the two salsas on the table, a squirt of lime (also on the table), and hearty scoops of the most fan-fucking-freshtastic guacamole ever.
Warren took a bite of the grilled jalepeno on his plate and said, "Mmm...it's still a little crunchy and not too spicy." Then he took another bite (with seeds) and started huffing and puffing and shoving ice and guacamole in his mouth. At this point Satchel and Jiro started folding tortillas in half, taking bites, and showing off the resulting "tortilla snowflakes."
A family came in and sat next to us. The dad ordered mini orange Chaparritas for his two boys. They looked good so I ordered two for my boys. Chaparritas are not carbonated and contain no high fructose sugar, so as you might imagine, the monkeys showed little interest after an initial taste.
No meal would be complete without a trip to the bathroom. I took both Satchel and Jiro to pee in the women's room, which featured red laminate floors and a pink faux finish. It wasn't clean, but not terribly dirty. I'd call it clean-ish. A few moments later we went to pay and Satchel informed me that he now needed to poop. I assigned this task to Warren. They returned to the cash register a minute later and Satchel informed me that he couldn't poop in the men's room because it was too messy. I asked Warren why he was unable to open the women's room door and let Satchel in (it was a one top) but he looked at me like I was insane. So off I went back to the restroom with Satchel...and Jiro. (He can't pass up an opportunity to look at Satchel's poop and say, "Ew.") While waiting for the neverending poop to end, I strolled down the hall five feet to peek in the men's room. (Yes, Warren, I can open the men's room door but you can't open the women's!) Satchel was right. It was quite messy and not nearly as clean-ish as the women's. It also had a very scary R2D2 looking water heater.
Our total tab was $28 plus tip. Not bad, but not as cheap as I had expected considering the cheapness of each individual item on the menu. I blame it on our fancy special plates and the Chapparitas. Next time I'm going for a $4 burrito and Warren is getting a $4 torta.