The best ethnic food is often the most difficult to find. So each week we'll spin the globe and search for a new other-worldly spot to expand our eating horizons around the Valley.
This week we go to El Salvador & Central America at Salvadoreno's (Restaurant #3).
On the Sunday of this review, I was not in the mood for ethnic food.
"Should we eat the world today?" asked my husband. I felt like a sandwich. An American-style sandwich. But duty prevailed.
"Oh, I guess so," I replied begrudgingly. We got into the car and headed to Salvadoreno's (Restaurant #3) off of Dunlap and Central...and I'm so glad we did, because it might be the best Eating the World thus far.
Authenticity-rating: Spanish-speaking music plays on the radio and portraits, paintings and maps hang on the wall. Menu items are written in Spanish, but everything on the extensive menu is depicted with a photograph for easy ordering.
Read what to order after the jump.
What to order: Diners online (and The New Times in 2009) raved about the pupusas, corn masa stuffed with a variety of fillings like pork, beans, and/or cheese and then cooked on a griddle.
My husband tried the variety pupusa plate (pork, pork/bean/cheese, loroco flour/cheese) which came with beans, rice, salsa roja and a coleslaw-esque side dish (called curtido).
I ordered a breakfast: scrambled eggs mixed with veggies, plantains, a thick tortilla and a side of beans and sour cream for dipping.
The tortillas aren't like Mexican tortillas, but smaller and more dense, like a really flat breHA!!!ad. I piled bits of everything on top of pieces of tortilla. The eggs were fluffy and flavorful and were delicious when paired with a bite a the caramelized plantains. Both meals were size-y, enough to fill one person up, share, and have a little for a snack later.
To top off the meal, we tried the Kolashampan orange drink, which was like an orange soda, with a little extra bite. My husband was excited to see that, in addition to interesting sodas, they also have a variety of beers in their cooler.
The ambience: Like many of the other ethnic places I've visited, the draw isn't the decor. The restaurant, located in a nearly-empty strip mall, is clean with ample seating. Maps, paintings, pictures and other Central American mementos line the walls.
Vegetarian-friendly: Bean and cheese options are abundant throughout the menu.
Read what the folks at Yelp had to say about it.
Salvadoreno's is located at 8911 N. Central Ave., #101 just south of Dunlap and open Monday - Friday from 11 a.m. - 8 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Know of a good ethnic restaurant we should check out. Let us know in the Comments section below.