4159 Summer Ave.
Our first restaurant meal of the new year was at Los Picosos on Summer. Yes, it's in the old school Taco Bell building that was most recently known as Taqueria Garibaldi. I was really digging Taqueria Garibaldi. Before that, it was El Torito. Maybe third time's a charm?
The inside is pretty much the same, although there are a few changes. Most notably they've added a wall by the counter so that you can't see into the kitchen like you used to. Gone are the candy machines too.
We grabbed a seat by the restrooms as far away from the TV as possible. (It was showing a soap opera with kissing. Later they changed it to Tarzan.) A nice waitress brought us menus, and I went ahead and asked for cheese dip to contain the monkeys (Satchel, 8, and Jiro, 6). We also got a round of waters, some chips, and four kinds of salsa.
According to the menu, there is a second Los Picosos on Macon Road. We've been to most of the Macon Road restaurants, but a quick check of my "places to try" list shows that I had "Taqueria de Picosos by Jerry's Sno Cones."
The chips looked much more corn-y than I'm used to seeing in a restaurant. It made me think they came from a bag. (The restaurant's previous incarnations made chips in house.) The quartet of salsas made up for this, though.
The "regular" salsa was nice, but nothing amazing, and the other three were all crazy hot and fairly exciting. I used a little bit of each as I plowed through the chips, and later, my dinner.
Speaking of dinner, between munching on chips and salsa, we ordered. Jiro, who has been frequenting Taco Bell after his Taekwondo classes, requested two tacos. I made sure he knew they wouldn't look quite the same, and he was okay with it. I asked for two steak tacos with no cilantro or onion. He wanted cheese, but for whatever reason I didn't think they had shredded cheese. (They did.) In a compromise he allowed me to pour cheese dip on the tacos.
He also had a side of rice, which I didn't take a picture of. Once he figured out how to hold the taco without it falling apart, he was quite happy. He refused to eat his rice until we made a deal that he could have a orange Juarito once it was gone.
Satchel, who's eyes have become much larger than his stomach, ordered three tacos and a side of rice and beans. He has also gotten so chatty that I don't think he ever stopped talking long enough to do much eating. One and a half of his tacos, and most of his beans, did manage to get in his stomach.
Warren, who I think was in love with the place based solely on the habanero sauce, ordered a burrito. This is a pretty unusual move for him. I'm the one who usually gets burritos. I'm pretty sure they were out of his first two meat choices, but he was very happy with the final product. Several times he offered me bites and told me how good it was.
In an attempt to make a healthy choice, I ordered a shrimp tostada and a chicken taco. (The healthy choosing came after the extensive chip eating.) It's pretty hard to go low calorie in a restaurant, much less a Mexican one, but I tried. I'd like to report that both of my items were delicious, but I was unhappily surprised to see a layer of mayonnaise gluing the shrimp to the tostada.
Once the kids were done eating, they got a bit antsy. Our waitress disappeared for a bit and the paying and leaving part took a little longer than I would have liked. I had trouble keeping Satchel in his seat. He felt compelled to stand up and do Taekwondo moves in the restaurant. We all took a trip to the nearby restrooms, which were fine, but just that. I left the kids by themselves and when they reappeared at the table they looked a bit freaked and were saying something about ghosts. (I'm sure they didn't see any actual ghosts. This is more a statement on the darkness/dankness of the restrooms.)
Our total bill came to $25 which was totally reasonable.