Sunday, April 27, 2014

Gallardo’s Mexican Restaurant

"Don't take life so serious, it ain't nohow permanent." ~ Porky Pine (Walt Kellly)

(No official web-site.)

Place: Gallardo's Mexican Restaurant 
Location: 3248 18th Street (on the corner of Shotwell Street); phonicular contact: (415) 436-9387
Hours: abierto para el desayuno Domingo a Sábado 07 a.m.
Meal: Chilaquiles ~ tortilla bites, eggs scrambled w/cheese (served with rice, beans & tortillas); y una taza de Café Mexicano

(Here are a couple of Mexican-inspired EweToobular video juxtaselections for this peaceful Sunday morning, Señors Los Tres Tenores.)

I went to a brand-new old place for desayno this morning: Gallardo's Mexican Restaurant. They are a family-owned place that had recently re-opened in this location back in October 2013. They used to be just a few blocks away (at 14th and Folsom Streets) in another building in the Mission, but I had never checked them out for desayuno before (big mistake, but I am sure I will rectify this in el futuro). They are now in the same location that Chava's Mexican Restaurant (see last 'blog-entry from August 17th, 2013) used to be in before they had a fire back in 2002 and moved to their new location over on Mission Street. (The irony is that the San Francisco Fire Department training station is just one block away.) I think the space had been vacant for the past eleven years or so, too. 

There are about fifteen tables with seating for 2-8 people each; there are probably available seating for sixty to seventy people comfortably now. I didn't even notice the décor/colour scheme of the walls and tablecloths until I had almost finished eating. They are burgundy and gold; now, I don't know if that is in deference to the San Francisco 49ers or to the colour of maíz tortillas and their Chilaquiles salsa, which was a nice deep rich red (con mucho sabor también).

The walls are also completely covered with large photos of 30's, 40's, and 50's Mexican movie stars (I think the center of the Mexican film industry was once called Madera de Acebo); unfortunately, none of whom I actually recognized. There may have been some of Cesar Romero (who was actually of Italiano-Cubano descent, but he regularly played Mexican rolls ~ just remember that Charlie Chan was played by a Swedish-American actor for many years; plus, there is no way that Mel Gibson would ever be mistaken for Uilliam Uallas if he were to walk down the streets of Edinburgh ~ more likely he would have rotten Scottish eggs thrown at him); Warner Baxter (while also not un verdadero mexicano, he was best known for his role as Cisco Kid for many years); Lupe Velez (an actual Mexican actress finally); or Antonio Rodolfo Quinn Oaxaca (who, contrary to popular belief, was neither Greek nor Arab).

I really liked the look of their breakfast menu and saw several other good ideas: Nopales con huevo (scrambled eggs with cactus); Huevos a la Mexicana (scrambled eggs with onion, tomato & bell peppers); Papas con huevo (scrambled eggs with potato, onion, tomato & bell peppers ~ which are probably served more in the Spanish torta style); and various omelettes from which to choose (because one omelette isn't really much variety).

I mainly ordered the Chilaquiles because it was on the menu and I could. Chilaquiles are usually my touchstone (la piedra de toque) when it comes to desayunos mexicanos (see 'blog-entry specifically about Chilaquiles from December 23rd, 2013). This really was one of the better versions of Chilaquiles that I have had recently. It was very reminiscent of Chava's version ~ coincidentally enough, which I first had in this exact same location over twenty years ago now.

The meal came with three (tres, 3) large, fresh and warm, homemade (casera) corn tortillas. I was even asked if I would like a refill for those, too. Three were more than sufficient for my appetite, and I probably could have sufficed with just two alone.

I like to call this style of Coffee "Café Mexicano" only because I always prepare it like the locals do: con tres azúcares y mucha leche. I have found that the extra sweetness works very well to counterbalance the picanteness of Mexican dishes. You know what they say, "When in Mexico, do like the Italians, Cubans, or Swedish do."

I really have no idea what Gallardo's offered in the way of bottled condimentary supplements, as their own homemade salsa was excellent. It was the chunky kind (not really a pico de gallo) with lots of fresh cilantro (sorry, I don't know the Spanish word for "cilantro") in it, and it packed a decent amount of fuego, too. I did not bother to bring any of my own hot sauces with me this morning ~ because that would be like bringing your own coal (or Brown Ale) with you to Newcastle-upon-Tyne or strawberries to Plant City-upon-92.

Good food, open early (and for desayuno, not "el Bruncho") every day? As that great Mexican actor, Arnold Negrohuevez, once stated: "Estaré de vuellllta!

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Chilaquiles ~ 7.3; salsa casera ~ 7.5


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  2. Thanks. Of course, this silly li'l 'blog is only helpful if you live in the San Francisco Bay Area... or really like breakfasts.