September 11, 2013

Las Cazuelas

We dined in for dinner at Las Cazuelas on Opening Day. It's next door to our beloved Windy City Beefs-N-Pizza at Silverado Ranch and Eastern. It's a quaint, but clean space serving up eats from their native Puebla, Mexico. The menu is pretty simple with a about dozen items to choose from. Don't expect to find burritos, nachos and dishes loaded with cheese and sour cream. Instead, you'll find tacos and tortas with a few fresh ingredients.

We were warmly welcomed; we took a minute to look over the menu and a few suggestions were offered. We ordered Torta De Pierna and Enchiladas de Mole Poblano. We were given free dessert and a fountain drink as a grand opening special. We took a seat and after a short wait, our dinner was delivered.

The Torta ($7) is tender pork in adobo sauce on a crusty roll with beans and topped with avocado. It was a great sandwich only made better with the spicy red sauce that was brought over when we mentioned we loved heat. It was smoky with a nice kick.

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Enchiladas de Mole Poblano ($7) is shredded chicken rolled in corn tortillas covered with Mole Poblano and onions. Mole can be wonderful when it's good and downright awful when it's bad. Fortunately, this version was well done and one of the better versions I've ever had. The chocolate and chili peppers are harmonious in the this sauce. I've found that is rarely the case so this was so refreshing. I found the chicken a bit bland on its own but with the milder darker red sauce it was a match made in heaven.

Dessert was chunks of jello and grapes in a milky sauce. It's slightly sweet. I like it best with the peanuts sprinkled over the top for a salty bite with crunch. We weren't sure what the purpose of the peanuts were, but when we asked it was explained that it is common for the people of Puebla to snack on them while they enjoy their meal. I've never heard of such a thing, but I love being educated on regional customs.

Portions are on the smaller side. No grande meals here so if you have a hearty appetite order a couple items.

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