Monday, August 13, 2012

El Patron

I typically do not frequent Mexican restaurants that are primarily either marketed by or frequented by gringos. It is not that those Mexican restaurants are not or cannot be good, it is just not the type of Mexican restaurants that I am looking for. When El Patron was first mentioned to me, it was by white people from Leawood, which immediately raised a red flag with me. Thus I continued to inaccurately judge El Patron, until a couple family members came in town from California and wanted to go out to dinner. We thought it would be the perfect mix of authenticity (as it IS located on SW BLVD after-all) and upper-scale atmosphere (as heard from the Leawood reco).

When we walked into El Patron, it was indeed filled with gringos, but one look at the menu dispelled any thoughts that I may have had of unauthenticity at El Patron. Skimming through the menu that is occupied by a plethora of entrees that contain Nopales (cactus) immediately made me a fan El Patron. I was first introduced to Nopales as a child, by immigrant farm workers who ate grilled Nopales (by itself) on homemade corn tortillas, lets just say I had to try El Patron's crack at this classic Mexican food!

First, we ordered drinks, all of which were great. The Margarita was an obvious choice, and it was good. However the game changer was a house cocktail, the coconut mojito. The coconut mojito had the mintiness of your standard mojito with the creaminess of the coconut, it was really fantastic, we will be ordering this again during our next trip to El Patron.

The chips and salsa (which are in no way shape or form a reason to go, or not to go to a Mexican restaurant) were very good. The chips taste homemade, but are not. The chips come with two different salsas: mild and spicy. Both salsas are very good.

The entrees: My wife indulged in her all time favorite Mexican dish, the Tacos Marineros (fish tacos). She was gracious enough to let me have a couple bites and it was divine. The "lightly breaded" tilapia was truly lightly breaded, making these tacos a great lighter meal option. The avocado, squeezed lime, and mango salsa combine with the tilapia for a truly great fish taco.

I went with the Arrachera con Nopales (skirt steak with cactus). The grilled skirt steak was just like the carne asada that my friend's mother used to make. The nopales were tender and delicioso! The beans and rice (that I normally hate as most restaurants) were not just edible, but actually good. The meal was tied together by a chile toreado, just like those served with my favorite gas station tacos in Dallas.

For the birthday of one of our group members, we got a sopapilla. The sopapilla was awesome! It came topped with chocolate, whipped cream, and fried ice cream. Pretty much everything sweet and delicious (and equally terrible for you) all on one plate.

El Patron is a fantastic little place on the boulevard and we will definitely be back!

El Patron on Urbanspoon

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