Tuesday, January 24, 2012

El Cholo Cantina: A Culinary Delight!!!!!

OK look, El Cholo Cantina is Americanized Mexican food! Simple as that! And there's nothing wrong with Americanized Mexican food at all! At all!! I've been to El Mercadito in Boyle Heights, the barrios of Tecate, and have been to more than one backyard Mexican barbecue in East LA! I would like to think that I know and have sampled legitimate and real Mexican Food!!! Does that mean because El Cholo is a little bit of a departure from the real thing mean that it is automatically disqualified as being good tasting food?!?! I say absolutely not!!!!!!!! No Way!!!!!!!! One of my best friends is Mexican and grew up in Santa Ana!! His parents immigrated to the US and hardly speak a word of English! Barry, my buddy, gets absolutely offended when it comes to Americanized Mexican food!!! My question for him is always, "Why?!?!" I always tell him, "Dude, you just have to take this food for what it's worth! It's not what you are going to find when down in Mexico and that's OK! The same idea applies for Japanese food, Italian food, Chinese food, etc. The different ethnic foods you find here in America are not truly authentic!! So just relax, put the food in it's proper context and enjoy it!!!" He never agrees with me!!  With that being said, Americanized Mexican food absolutely has a place in the culinary world and I find it to be quite delicious!!!  And again, El Cholo Cantina is not the type of truly authentic Mexican Food you will find in the aforementioned places! But places like El Torito, Chipotle,  and Chevy's  though not authentic ... they're damned good!!! They're damned good!!! They're damned good!!! They're damned good!!! They're damned good! They're damned good!!! You're not going to change my mind!!! You're not going to change my mind!!! You're not going to change my mind!!! You got that Barry!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!
So with that, I went to El Cholo Cantina the other night!!! I've been here a few times before, and hands down, this is one of my favorite restaurants to eat at!!!!! When I heard we were gonna eat at El Cholo Cantina in Irvine, I began to get butterflies in my stomach and I felt exactly like I did the night before I asked my high school crush to the Senior Prom!!! Later that summer she dumped me and broke my heart!!!! Damn you, Elaine!!!!!! Damn you!!!! ... Anyway, upon knowing that El Cholo Cantina would soon happen, my gut became filled with childhood puppy-love and joy which I thought was now dulled down because of experiencing the harsh realities of life!!!! I never knew I could feel this way again!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!! In the past at El Cholo, I've hammered down the Chicken Chimichangas (which are not Mexican, but Southwestern/Tex-Mex), and the Carne Asad Burrito (Again, burritos are not Mexican), both of which were completely and utterly brilliant meals!!!!! Soooooooooooooooooooooooooo g-damn good!!!!!!... SO GOOD!!!!!!!!!
When I returned the other night, it was the Carnitas Plate that caught my eye!!!! I was like a Rainbow Trout who had been fooled by a plastic caddisfly loitering on the top of a stream by an angler with his fly-rod!!!! I mean, when I saw that Carnitas Plate on the menu, I was hooked!!!!! And no matter how hard I might've wanted to fight and jump and get the hell out of the grips of that fishing net I was being reeled into, there was no escape for me!!!!! Carnitas Plata pour mi por favor!!!!!!!! Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!
After our orders had been placed, our wonderful server for the nigh brought out basket upon basket of free chips and salsa!!!!! We ordered some guacamole to accompany our chips and salsa!!!!! These chips were unbelievably tasty!!!! Unbelievably!!!!! Jesus Christ!!!! These chips had to have just been pulled out of the fryer!!! They were hot, greasy, and absolutely melted in my mouth!!!!! And their salsa is nothing short of addicting!!!!!!!! There is something they put in the salsa that makes is so flavorful!!!!! I can't put my finger on what exactly it was, but I swear to God I probably could've just sat at that table all night plowing through basket after basket after basket of those chips and salsa!!!!!!!! With these chips and salsa in mind, it's now tempting for me to get a syringe, fill it with El Cholo salsa, dim the lights in my room and line my arm with tire tracks every single night of the week!!!!! No joke!!!!! Oh, the guacamole was OK too!!!! While we were eating our chips and salsa, our server suprised us and brought out a plate of chips covered in melted cheese!!!!!! When we asked him about this he pointed to a small sign on our booth that read, "Nacho Table." Apparentely if you're sitting at the "Nacho Table" then they'll bring you out a free plate of Nachos!!!! Saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeettttttt!!!!!! Ahahahahahahahahaha!!!! In picking up a nacho, I actually picked up something like 10 of them because the cheese was sticking and attached to many of the chips!!!!! Hey, it counts as one nacho, right?!?!?!?!?!?!?! Ahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!! The cheese and chips were so greasy and so beautiful tasting that I actually had a moment of clarity and asked in kind of a loud voice looking at the ceiling, "What have I done to deserve this?!?!?!?!?! What have I done to receive such a graceful blessing?!?!?!?!?!?!" People then started to stare at me. It was a little embarrassing...
Then then then then... They brought out the entrees!!!!!! Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!! When the server dropped my plate down in front of me, I had forgotten how unbelievably massive the portions are which El Cholo gives to you!!! I had a huge pile of carnitas on my plate along with a huge side of rice and beans!!!! I asked the waiter to bring me some extra corn tortillas because my plan was to construct as many carnitas tacos as I possibly could out of my plate!!! I ended up having a total of 9 corn tortillas that were each filled with carnitas, rice, beans, guacamole, lettuce, and salsa!!!! Nine of them baby!!!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!! As I sat there loading up tortilla after tortilla and pushing each of them down into my growling stomach, I think I could actually hear myself getting fatter and my arteries clogging!!!!! The food here is incredibly heavy and sits in your gut like a g-damn cinder-block!!!! But I love and live for that feeling of lard slowly churning through your intestines, so for me it was a mezmorizing moment!!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!! I thought the carnitas were fantastic!!! The tortillas were hot and fluffy, and the rice and beans were all of a high quality!!!!! This was a wonderful, life giving meal that I partook in at El Cholo Cantina!!!!! So excited was I, that I ended up texting my closest friends, sharing with them that I had just had one of the most amazing meals of my entire life!!!! I want to share meaningful and important moments in my life, and this moment was worth sharing with the people who are closest to me, the ones I love!!!! That's what I want to do when I have a good meal!!!!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!! 
All I can say is that if you want a huge plate of sublime tasting Mexican food, then this is your place!!! Don't leave this life with regrets!!!! Go to El Cholo Cantina and experience the life that is truly life!!!!!! Oh yeah, and be sure to sit at the "Nacho Table!!!!!" Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!! Do it now!!! Now I say!!!

El Cholo Cantina on Urbanspoon

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Wingstop: I Want Them So Bad!!!!!!

There's something about flipping on an NFL football game that just causes me to crave chicken wings!!!  I mean it's like as soon as I push the power button and the screen pops on with Tom Brady or Drew Brees slinging the ball around, almost immediately my desire for savory flavored buffalo wings becomes so intense that I'm like Mr. Hyde wanting to beat a man to death with a wooden cane if anybody get's in my way or disturbs me!!!! Just let me sit in solace and pull every last bit of chicken off that bone with my teeth for God's sake!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!
With the NFL playoffs now underway, it's as though I've ingested Dr. Jekyll's special potion and my want for chicken wings has become the most ardent feeling anyone can ever know!!!! ... EVER!!!! My yearning for buffalo wings is unmatched from any human desire that has ever existed in the history of the world!!!! I'm talking about religious longings, wanting to spend time with passed loved ones, the prayers for friends and families to be healed, and the pursuit of personal wealth!!!! Each of those things can bring about fierce emotion and need!!!!! But I'm going to tell you right off the bat, my fervor in wanting to absolutely destroy as many chicken wings that can be crammed down into my cram hole while watching NFL football is unmatched by any passion and/or eagerness that exists in any human soul!!!!! No matter how bad you want to spend one more day with your deceased parents, I want chicken wings during football more!!!!!!!! No matter how painful it might be see your best friend laying in a hospital bed after a bad accident and wanting more than anything to see them healed, I want my chicken wings more!!!!!!!!! No matter how badly you want that multi-million dollar pay day so you can live a life of luxury and comfort, I want my g-damn buffalo wings and beer while watching the NFL playoffs more!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!
Enter Wingstop!!!!! I came here last Sunday because a buddy of mine down in South County wanted to watch the NFL playoffs!!! So, when you watch football, a non-negotiable fact of the universe is that you must eat buffalo wings!!!!!!!! And and and... drink a case of beer!!!!!! Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!! I'm just kidding about drinking the entire case!!! That'd be a little excessive!!!!! But you do need to have beer to some capacity!!!!!!!! Ahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!! I had just seen a commercial with Troy Aikman in it promoting Wingstop and their wings looked nothing short of amazing!!!!!! Before I walked in to Wingstop I went to their website and did quite a bit of planning and studying for what I was going to order!!!!! After contemplating the menu for hours and hours and analyzing my cravings so as to have the best eating experience possible, I settled on the 35 wing family pack that comes with up to three flavors and large fries!!!!! And let me just say that last Sunday, I was eating as a family of one!!!!!! That 35 pack with the large fries was all for me!!!!! My friend and I couldn't agree on what we wanted so he got Taco Bell!!!! Flavor-wise I did 12 garlic parmasean, 12 of the original hot, and 11 of the Cajun!!!!  Also, only having one large order of fries simply wasn't going to be enough for me!!!! So, I went to Wendy's and picked up 2 more orders of large fries!!!!!!!! Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!
I just gotta say, that the combination of Wingstop buffalo wings, fries, beer, and the NFL playoffs, proved to be a more glorious moment than what Peter, John and James witnessed on the Mount of Transfiguration that day some 2000 years ago!!!!! I know I know, I'm blaspheming!!!! Forgive me God!!!!! These wings were so crispy, so flavorful, and so utterly satisfying that if my life was being DVR'd then I would've recorded my Wingstop meal last Sunday and then just put it on a continuous loop for days on end!!!!!!!! Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!! This chicken, and these flavors and sauces are beautiful!!!!!!! For the entirety of the game I was licking my fingers trying to capture every last bit of flavor off of my epidermal before I had to use the facilities and wash my hands!!!!! The garlic parmasean, original hot, and cajun were all spectacular and filled with excellent flavors!!!! Oh yeah, and their fries are good too!! Hey, it's football season!!!!!! Do yourself a favor and pound Wingstop wings to no end!!!! Do it now!!!!! You won't regret it!!!! In fact, I've gotta go because there's a football game on right now and my Mr. Hyde mentality is starting to take over!!!! Give me my Wingstop wings or I will beat you with a stick!!!!!!!!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahaha

Wingstop on Urbanspoon

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Jimmy's Burger Joint: A Sight to Behold!!!!

There is always something refreshing when driving down 17th Street in Costa Mesa! There is heart, there is character, there is the history of Costa Mesa that you'll find on 17th Street like no place else in town! I've been eating a lot of burgers lately and have found myself on a vision quest of sorts to find the best burgers around! Does anybody remember the movie Vision Quest with Matthew Modine?!?!?!?! C'mon somebody out there knows what I'm talking about, right?!?!?! Ahahahahahahahahahaha!! For Modine in the film, he found meaning in life by dropping 22 pounds and defeating an unbeaten high school wrestler in Washington! Well, my personal vision quest is to perhaps gain 22 pounds on my search for the most succulent delicious burgers in the history of documented time!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahaha!!! So, I'm looking for the best of the best burgers in Southern California!!! Side note: Does anybody remember the movie with Eric Roberts and James Earl Jones called Best of the Best?!?!?!?! ... OK OK, I'll stop with the movie references!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaaha!!!!
Anyway, I found that Jimmy's Burger Joint on 17th Street in Costa Mesa has been making a little bit of noise when it comes to the deliciousness of their burgers!!! And to continue to fulfill my destiny of searching never endingly for the greatest burger ever, I drove over to Jimmy's to experience the hype of these burgers for myself!!
To my surprise, Jimmy's is an incredibly small place! Not that that's bad or anything, but for a place that talks about being a hot spot to watch football and drink cold beer, I envisioned a larger space! Not a knock against Jimmy's, just an observation!! I took a seat at the bar and I ordered a Jimmy's Burger!! I was sitting at a seat that enabled me to peer back in to the kitchen so that I could see as they were preparing my burger over a blazing flame on the grill!! It was a beautiful sight for me to behold!!!!! I would even go so far as to say that it was a more beautiful thing to observe then Munch's The Scream, the inside of the Sistine Chapel, a sunset in Santorini, and the view of Yosemite atop Half-Dome!!! I've been to and seen all of those things/places and found them to be nothing short of breathtaking!!! And I'm not even exagerating when I say that what I saw in Jimmy's that day in the kitchen, took my breath away moreso than those 4 things mentioned above!!! The view of that raw cattle being charred on a grill with fire shooting up and grease dripping down onto the burners, damn near brought me to tears!!!!!
The burger, when brought out to me, was a g-damn work of art!!!! It looked so beautiful and so emotionally moved me, that I would argue that it deserves it's own g-damn wing at the Orange County Muesuem of Art just down the road!!!! That's truth!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!
The Jimmy's Burger that I stuffed into my face that afternoon had wonderful flavors, fresh toppings, and had an extremely high endorphin releasing capability!!!! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!! Also, the fries here are very unique!!! I think they're fried in peanut oil to some capacity, but I don't know for sure!!! I hardly know anything about cooking, preparation, or ingredients!!! I just like to eat a lot of food and I can tell you whether it tastes good or not!!!!!!!!!! Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!! But the fries were excellent!!! They were incredibly juicy and greasy, so much so that I had to ask for extra napkins to dry my hands off after I would squeeze five of those fries together, smear them in my goop of ketchup, then place them to rest in my mouth!!!!!! The fries were great and complimented the burger nicely!!!!
Overall, I enjoyed my visit to Jimmy's Burger Joint and found their burger to be quite a noble one!! I will say that Jimmy's has more of a neighborhood feel to it!! If I lived around the corner, I would probably come to Jimmy's all the time to watch football and drink beer!! Truthfully, I wouldn't get in my car and drive to this place to watch a game!!! But I will reiterate that this burger is fantastic and I recommend it wholeheartedly!!!! Do this place!!! Give it a shot and experience an excellent Orange County burger!!!!! Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!

Jimmy's Burger Joint on Urbanspoon