Well, it’s been a couple insane weeks with sickness, weddings and bachelor parties but all seems to be back to normal for the time being so it’s back to work! Today I wasn’t really sure where I would end up until I noticed a big screw in one of my tires when I left work. I figured I’d head right to America’s Tire co to get it fixed and walk over to Plaza Jalisco for an early dinner in the meantime. For the longest time I’ve thought that Plaza Jalisco was the same as Jalisco Fresh Grill, which has a couple Roseville locations. After a little online searching I found they are totally different places. Jalisco Fresh Grill is a little chain with a 3rd location in Midtown Sacramento while Plaza Jalisco seems to be an independent single location. I’m not sure how long Plaza Jalisco has been around, but I feel like it’s at least as far back as when CompUSA was around.
I entered the mostly empty restaurant at around 4:20pm. A couple of customers were eating on the far side and the cashier was watching a soap opera on one of the 3 TVs. She quickly made her way to the counter and greeted me while I skimmed over the menu. It seemed like a typical taqueria menu, maybe with a bit more seafood options than usual. I found their carnitas plate, the Carnitas Jalisco and went ahead with the order. I asked if it came with guacamole and sour cream and ordered the sour cream on the side since it didn’t come with it. I skipped a drink today and stuck with water. The total came to about $12. I stopped by the salsa bar and picked up some chips and salsa on the way to my seat. They had a pretty good assortment of salsas.
Plaza Jalisco is definitely nicer than the average taqueria. The tables have a neat iridescent shine to them. It’s bigger than most I’ve been in and they’ve got a nice little north-east facing patio area where you can eat outside that was already out of the hot sun by the time I arrived. The place was very clean and looks like it’s been well maintained over the years. If I didn’t already know it’s been here for so long you might have been able to convince me it was fairly new.
The chips were average, nothing really special. The salsa was excellent though, flavorful and perfectly hot. I had only just started on them when my food came out. It arrived on an enormous platter. I left my phone in the shot for a little perspective. Corn tortillas came in a dedicated container, nicer than the usual foil they would be wrapped in elsewhere. The first thing I noticed was that the guacamole looked really good. It tends to really be hit and miss from place to place. The rice and beans looked pretty standard, and they were. I started into the carnitas and was very pleased with them right away. They were tender and juicy with just a little crisp at the edges, exactly as I like them. The guacamole and sour cream were both thick and went great with the tasty carnitas and corn tortillas. I wished there were more than a few little scraps of lettuce. I like to mix it into the rice and beans for some extra texture, but here there really wasn’t much to work with.
I’m would say this was one of the best carnitas plates I’ve had, despite the standard rice and beans (which seems to be the case everywhere, I’ve never really been blown away by them anywhere in particular). It’s definitely right up there with my favorite taqueria, El Sombraro at Sierra College & Douglas. The portions were good, including the sour cream & guac and the service was fast & friendly (she checked on me a while after delivering my food to make sure everything was good, which seems rare for most taquerias, then again I’m not really sure this place is technically a taqueria). This one was a win.