If you weren’t looking for the place, you’d probably drive past Las Palmas on Roosevelt Avenue. There’s no towering sign you can seen from the road. Just a green neon behind burglar bars in a rinky-dink retail building seemingly thrown to the side of the road like many of the businesses that flank this part of Roosevelt.
The neighborhood seems to be keenly aware of Las Palmas. It was still a lively place after the morning rush. Older couples. A couple of solo older dudes. A pastor from a nearby church introduced himself to two younger tattooed Latinas, one of them with green hair, and gave them cupcakes as a kind gesture. They talked and laughed for about five minutes, and then they prayed.
On the breakfast taco menu were a handful of new discoveries. I asked the waitress about the papa caseras, because I had no clue. Potatoes in a red sauce, she said. But when the taco arrive, large chunks of potatoes were in a seedy paste more than a sauce. And so this taco was dry. The paste tasted like the ubiquitous chile de arbol. Definitely more of a rustic taco in desperate need of more seasoning and moisture. Nothing some of green hot sauce — a typical green peppery, watery sauce — couldn’t solve, and it did elevated the taco several notches.
The wiener and gravy on flour was another unique taco, for me. This was exactly what you’d expect: weenie and in a salty white gravy and onions — the weenie this strange sort of nuclear orange color. I’m not going to say an unnatural color for weenie, because weenies are naturally unnatural. (It got me thinking of another combo I haven’t seen: weenie a la Mexicana. Let’s make that happen people!)
The chicharron and egg I ordered cripsy (30 cents extra). At the risk of making myself out to be a complete ignorant fool, this taco for me begs the question: When they make chicharron guisada, are the skins stewed after they are fried? Or are they never fried? One would think that if stewed after frying that the skins might disintegrate in the liquid. But anyway, these chicharron were slightly chewy, which was actually nice, and the egg well-cooked and seasoned.
Finally, the bean and egg on corn was dry, too, but nothing some of that green sauce couldn’t fix.
Las Palmas also happens to have the friendliest service I’ve experienced while writing this blog. Not fake friendly and not smothering, either. But a genuine humble kind of friendly where they’ll call you sir.
Las Palmas, 2911 Roosevelt Avenue, (210) 928-7980
— Worth traveling across town for
— Average S.A. taqueria. Some hits, some misses
— Mostly misses
— Benjamin Olivo
What do you think? Is there a taco I should have ordered, but didn’t? Have any taco news, issues or concerns? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.