For Carne Lovers
When I visited Tucson recently for a conference for work, I didn’t do much research on local restaurants in the area. The conference was at a resort and most of our schedule was full so I didn’t think there would be much time for trying different food in the city. Fortunately, we arrived early on the first day and had time to go out to lunch.
I did some quick research with my Yelp and Urbanspoon apps and saw that El Charro Café was the most popular Mexican restaurant near us. We hopped on the resort’s shuttle with Jesus as our driver and headed out in search of delicious Mexican food.
The restaurant wasn’t particularly crowded when we arrived but it was pretty late on a Sunday afternoon so that’s to be expected. I noticed a sign by the hostess table that said something about “famous chimichangas” and I wondered if that was legitimate or just something the restaurant considered itself famous for.
The chimichanga was stuffed with a spiced shredded beef that was also mixed with sundried tomatoes and onions. It was an impressive amount of meat and the chimichanga had a nice crunch without being too greasy. Actually, there was nothing greasy about this at all for a dish that was fried. It was also topped with cheese and a green chile salsa, which was great for me because I don’t like really spicy food.
I also ordered my chimichanga with sides of sour cream, guacamole, and pico de gallo. The guacamole and pico were both very fresh and I loved the generous amount of cilantro in the pico. There were also the standard sides of Mexican rice and refried beans, which were both good but nothing exceptional.
With the size of the chimichanga and the sides, it’s a dish that could probably be split between two people. I ate the whole thing because I was starving and…let’s be honest – self-control isn’t my strong suit.
I haven’t eaten many chimichangas so I don’t know if it’s the best there is but it was very good. The best Mexican food I’ve ever had is in Orlando a restaurant named Azteca and I wouldn’t say El Charro Café is better than that, but it’s better than any of the Mexican food I’ve had in Roanoke.
And for a trip to the desert in the Southwest, finding good Mexican food is a must.
El Charro Cafe
6910 East Sunrise Drive, Tucson, AZ 85750
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