March 2, 2007
111 South Leona
San Antonio, TX
Tortilla chips with salsa (complimentary)
Entree I: Qui-Kiri-Ki – A sample platter consisting of chicken mini-flautas, mini-chalupas de picadillo, cheese quesadillas, and bean and cheese nachos with guacamole and sour cream ($8.25)
Entree II: Caldo Del Mercado – Our famous tortilla soup is prepared with tender chicken, chicken/tomato broth and topped with Monterey Jack Cheese, avocado slices, fresh cilantro and crisp tortilla chips ($5.95)
A local recommended that my colleague and I dine at Pico de Gallo before we left San Antonio. She said enthusiastically, “All the tourists go there!” I generally avoid tourist traps, but my colleague was hungry and the place was nearby.
The first thing I noticed upon arriving at the restaurant was the ridiculous amount of decorations strung on the ceilings—piñatas, Christmas lights, and colorful banners covered every possible inch (see pictures). The décor reminded me of Times Square, Tijuana, and my high school Spanish classrooms rolled into one. While some may be turned off by such gaudiness, I must admit I kind of loved it.
We munched on chips and salsa while we perused the menu. I was surprised we were not served pico de gallo! The salsa was initially mild, but had a surge in spiciness toward the end that was too hot for me.
As I’ve said before—for a SoCal gal, I don’t like Mexican food as much as I should. It’s mainly because the cuisine is too heavy on cheese, meat, and deep frying. To avoid the post-Mexican food heaviness, I ordered the tortilla soup. The large bowl of soup was full of chicken and cheese, but skimpy on avocado and served with fresh tortillas (corn and flour) and tortilla chips on the side. I have never thought to eat fresh tortillas with tortilla soup, but will do so from now on because it’s delicious. The soup was fantastic, especially the melted cheese and aromatic broth.
My colleague ordered a sampler platter consisting of everything I dislike about Mexican food. She gobbled it all up like a champ.