Enchilada Mama (Pastores -- San Francisco, CA)
I am a complete and total fuckin' loser for not having written about Pastores prior to this. One would think that having found a delicious and cheap non-taqueria Mexican restaurant would send me running to the keyboard. My apologies, I always seem to get side-tracked by Mitchell's on the way.
In any case, it was about three hundred and forty-seven years ago that the lovely Amy encouraged me to go there. Actually, it was on the entire drive home from my lover's New Year's Eve party that she gushed about Irma's dope creations.
Not long after, I tried Pastores and you now cannot keep me away. I bring friends there, I send strangers there and I mow down like only a whore can when I, myself, go there.
Sweet Chef Irma Calderon is at the helm of this outer-Mission paradise. As Amy put it, it's like having your very own Mexican Mama. She cooks everything herself and throws in nice little touches like free coffee with breakfast (crappy coffee, but still, it's free!). Her homemade salsas, served with chips when you sit down, are the perfect foreplay for what is to come (so to speak).
The menu isn't huge, but it's big enough to find something you like. Once you do, you will not want to stray because you will love your choice so much. Jon almost always gets the mole enchiladas with chicken. These are not on the menu, but if you order enchiladas, Irma will offer you the mole. This is hands down, the best mole I've tasted. It's absolutely perfect, and has a depth of flavor that I find lacking in most moles.
I prefer the chilaquiles con huevos so much that I will finish my plate no matter how full my belly is. Irma's green sauce really lights my fire. Plus, any dish composed of a spicy sauce, onions, tortilla strips and eggs will get me going. Of course, we have friends who swear by the flautas. And the chorizo con huevos. So really you can't go wrong.
You get a hefty serving of beans and rice on the side with everything you order. You also get a side of warm fuzzies from Irma. AND the last time I was there, with Amy, we saw Irma was putting in a cold case for desserts. Yee-haw! AND there is beer. What more do you want?
For the life of me, I cannot understand why the fuck this place is not busy all the time. Besides the fact that it is so tasty it's sick, this shit is cheap. My chilaquiles are $6.50, Jon's enchiladas are just $7.95. I mean, come on, that's almost cheaper than Muni right there.
Please go to Pastores and give Irma and your belly some good lovin'.
"To eat is a necessity. To eat intelligently is an art."
-- La Rochefoucauld