Someone I like thought it would be a good idea to treat me to this experience. I’m down with going up– so here we go!
It’s smart to make reservations: the gaggle of Bros that showed up this fine Saturday morning expecting to get a table in the nice part ended up sitting at the bar, inside. And I think the whole appeal of this place is the outdoor seating. Pretty much their raison d’etre. It is kinda neat to see El Centro from a different perspective, removed from the street level hostilities of lawyers talking about lawyering or the poor folk forced to public urination cuz nobody wants to share a toilet. How pretty it all is when you can ignore the grime.
Honestly, I wasn’t going to do an HR review. Just around New Year’s Day I went to one of my favorite spots and had a great dish of HR’s. But eggs being eggs, I ended up with a 3 day expulsion party for said dish. I thought my HR review days were over. Limited menu options on this day brought me back to the fold, even if the $16 price already told me it wasn’t worth it. Meh, I can turn it into a blog post. And so it was.
It looked pretty good when I first got my plate. Nice plating, looks well made. But then we realize that the sauce is one of those weirdo “chili” powder/cumin concoctions that my gringo friends seem to think are part of the Mexican repertoire. If your restaurant is a block from the chile stand at Grand Central Market then there is no excuse for you to not use proper dried chiles in your recipe. Seriously people, just soak a few red chiles in hot water and blend the shit outta them, that will always taste better than the paprika/cayenne/chili powder/whatever mix you are using. Adding tomato chunks doesn’t help, blend it foo! But it gets better, aka worse!
I’ve already commented on black beans being the whitest bean around and this place upholds that tradition. Triple-ey worse is that they layer the 3 not-fried, not even slightly passed in oil tortillas with THEIR OWN COAT of undercooked (likely canned) black beans making for a tower of breakfast almost impossible to eat. Who the fuck wants to eat 3 hard-bean cold-tortilla pancake-tacos all at once? Unless this is some competitive eating situation nobody needs to be doing this. I’m always puzzled when bad dishes like this end up on a menu: don’t they ever ask their kitchen workers for opinions, at least on the Mexican food? In the end, I scraped the decently cooked eggs off to the side and ate that, leaving the rest of the maiz short stack to find their rightful place in a garbage bag. R.I.P. wasted tortillas.
We did have a good time relaxing and enjoying the view of the corporate offices where people in power plot to destroy our lives. Always good to see what the enemy is up to. Next time we come up here it’ll be just for drinks and to plan the demise of this society that feeds us costly yet abysmal HR’s!
Down with White Black Beans! For a World with Proper Huevos Rancheros!
448 S. Hill St
Los Angeles, CA 90013