Caminos de Michoacan Panaderia & Taqueria
3896 Macon Road
We first noticed Caminos de Michoacan when we ate at El Ranchito Taqueria a few weeks ago. We thought it was a bakery--and it is, but when I was researching my Macon Me Crazy story for the Flyer, I went in and discovered it was a bakery and a taqueria. After sampling the pastries and tacos for my story, I was anxious to get back with the monkeys (Satchel, 7, and Jiro, 5).
We went on a Saturday night and found the brightly colored and well lit restaurant to be only mildly busy. There were three or four other tables full, which is respectable, but it felt empty since the place is huge and has seating for 70! I let the monkeys walk past the pastry cases in order to motivate them to eat their dinner. They both immediately set about pointing and saying, "I want that!" With a variety of sugar cookies (even pig shaped!), muffins, croissants, donuts, and parfaits to choose from, dessert was not going to be an easy decision!
I told them they could take another look after dinner and we headed to a table. The monkeys were psyched to see that "The Hulk" was on TV. A nice waitress came right over with a basket of chips, green and red salsa. (The green is crazy hot!) She asked for our drink orders and Jiro immediately signaled that he wanted a Tutti Fruiti Jarrito. (He loves those Jarritos!) Satchel, who usually opts for water, requested a Pineapple Jarrito. Getting into the spirit, Warren suggested we try a horchata, which is a milky drink spiced with cinnamon. I also ordered some cheese dip to appease the monkeys.
When the waitress came back with our wares, I tried to make conversation. "What's up with the pig shaped cookie?" I asked. She shrugged and said, "Nothing." I was hoping for a funny explanation, but I think the language barrier was preventing me from getting one. The monkeys dove right into the cheese dip and Satchel pondered, "Why does cheese dip have to taste so good?" Believe me, I wish I knew!
After much debate and a fine combing of the menu (which thankfully includes English translations), we decided on the following: chicken soup for Satchel (He loves soup!), chicken flautas for Jiro, guisado pork for Warren, and a chicharon taco and shrimp tostada for me. Our wait was short and uneventful thanks to the Hulk and the promise of sweets.
For whatever reason, Jiro shunned his flautas. I think they may have been too close to the avocado garnish. He ended up eating rice wrapped in a tortilla. (Satchel ate his avocado and one flauta.) Satchel's soup was really quite impressive. It was filled with fresh broccoli, cauliflower, squash, green beans, corn on the cob, and chicken. He was in heaven. Warren liked his pork, but said he didn't expect it to come with bones. I was a little disappointed by my order. The chicharon, or pork rinds, were covered in a green sauce that I wasn't too crazy about. Likewise the shrimp tostada had a little too much cocktail sauce mixed in for my taste. Warren gladly ate my rejects while I ate the rest of Jiro's. (Next time I think we'll all try more soup, which appears to be their specialty.)
At some point during dinner, the Hulk got switched off and soccer got switched on. And we saw the best Mexican mullet ever. (Warren then coined the term "mulleto.") Satchel bit his finger instead of the chicken and had a moment, but thankfully recovered enough to finish his meal. (This provided the 1000th opportunity to explain the importance of eating with utensils.) We had a trip to the bathroom, which was not the cleanest ever, but acceptable.
When we were all done, I told the monkeys they could pick out their dessert--or go next door for an ear of corn. "Corn?" they asked as if it was too good to be true. "We want corn!" (I think the very popular horchata satisfied our sweet teeth.)
So off we went next door.
Best Z Market, 3888 Macon
We learned on our last visit that corn (and tamales) are only sold on Friday and Saturday. Each ear is slathered with mayonnaise, cotija cheese, and then squirted with lime and cayenne pepper if you choose. It's the best $3 you'll ever speand. Trust me.
Warren had the genius idea of pulling his car around so we could tailgate. It was the perfect solution for a very messy treat. Jiro and I both got spicy corn and Satchel opted for plain.