Original Mexican Restaurant (TX); El Charro (AZ); El Cholo (CA)
laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Thu Nov 8 05:04:46 UTC 2001
At 12:13 PM -0500 11/8/01, Bapopik at AOL.COM wrote:
>EL CHOLO COOKBOOK:
>RECIPES AND LORE FROM CALIFORNIA'S BEST-LOVED MEXICAN KICHEN
>by Merrill Shindler
>144 pages, hardcover
>Angel City Press, Inc., Santa Monica
> Also mostly recipes and very little history.
> El Cholo began in 1927--too late for "taco." The 1927 menu is
>nicely reprinted in full (front and back of the book)--it has
>ENCHILADA, CHILE RELLENO, TAMALE, CHILE CON CARNE, TORTILLAS, but no
>"taco." TOSTADA sold for 35 cents.
> Pg. 25:
> While El Cholo is the very heart and soul of the style of Mexican
>cooking that's become popular in Los Angeles, San Antonio can be
>said to be the birthplace of Mexican-American cuisine. It's home to
>the eating establishment that claims to be the oldest Mexican
>restaurant in America (though not always at the same location, as in
>the case of El Cholo). It's called the Original Mexican Restaurant,
>which from 1899 to 1960 sat at 117 Losoya Street, around the corner
>from the Alamo. (It's since moved across the river.) According to
>a curious little volume put out in 1950 by the Ford Motor Company
>called _The Ford Treasury of Favorite Recipes from Famous Eating
>Places_, the restaurant's most popular dish was its beef taco. In
>1950, this was no doubt the very essence of exoticism. These days,
>it sounds rather quaint--the recipe even calls for ground beef
>boiled in water, which guarantees a nice pile of soggy hamburger.
>No wonder it's taken so long for Mexican cooking to ea!
>rn the respect it deserves.
One diner's perspective:
By the early 1970's, El Cholo could not be regarded as a particularly
memorable Mexican restaurant, especially by the very high standard of
the greater Los Angeles area. It was definitely medium-caliber
Cal-Mex and not the real thing. The bar, however, made superb
margaritas, whence its standing as the eating/drinking place of
choice for the USC Dept. of Linguistics, despite the limitations of
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