Sunday, July 4, 2010

Los Mariachis

Nashville Restaurants and Food
Los Mariachis
1019 Gallatin Road South

I have no idea why I keep coming back to this place. And if that sounds like the start of a bad review, it’s not. This Mexican joint has me perplexed. So, bear with me.

Los Mariachis is a sucky name. That said, I stumbled in one day hungry, looking for something new and not willing to travel further than necessary. We visited this location a couple of years ago when it was called Arandas. It wasn’t a very positive experience. This time I sat down and ordered some guacamole and a couple of tacos. The guac arrives: fresh, chunky, full of cilantro and with a hot pepper kick that you usually don’t find around these parts. Pretty damn good. The tacos are fine; the carnitas (fried pork) is juicy, covered up in onions and cilantro and piled on a nice, fresh corn tortilla. Lengua (beef tongue) is chewy and tasty. Overall not a bad deal.

Then I peruse the menu a little more closely and notice a bunch of dishes say Arandas. I’m a nosy bastard so I inquire and find out it is indeed Arandas, repackaged with a new name and sign. I ask the obvious question – did you get a new cook? Is this place under new management? Apparently not, it’s the same joint with new paint and a stupid new name.

What happened? Did the Mexican food gods descend and bestow new blessings on the kitchen? Did the owners take it upon themselves to punch up the food quality? I tried in vain to find out. No luck.

Another day and another hungry Gallatin Road mission. I pull in again and decide to give Los Mariachis a second try. The crazy cilantro continues in the zesty salsa. Reasonably fresh chips and a nice wedge of lime for my tap water – seems to me that are trying harder. The pollo supremo does not disappoint. It’s a chicken breast pounded flat and offering what is described as special sauce. That’s a term that usually scares the crap out of me. This time it is indeed supremo: well seasoned and covered in what seems to be a variant of mole – a little dark and husky, but much milder. The grilled zucchini, celery, carrots, peppers and onions on the side have a nice crunch – kinda nice to have something besides beans.

So, there you go. Make what you will of this little tale. I think it’s the same damn Texas food chain that ran Arandas. The servers are nice and the food is decent. Not a bad thing at all. So, I’ll just stop asking questions, shut up and eat.

I paid $14 with tax and tip on one visit and about $10 on another visit.

Los Mariachis on Urbanspoon


mIKES said...

Be aware that the 'old' location of Las Maracas (3935 Gallatin) in Inglewood / East Nashville, has a new Mexican themed tenant. I'll try it this week.