Wednesday, December 14, 2011

New York Edition: Pinche Taqueria Merits Both a Rave and a Word of Warning

Let me quickly knock out a review of Pinche Taqueria because the lag time between food consumption during our New York trip and actual discussion of said mastication is getting absolutely ridiculous. It has been like 18 days since I sampled the grub at this Mott St. eatery – one of two New York locations – and what follows is what I remember about our excursion.

Being that our blog is entitled The Pizza Project, it was our intention to sample as much New York City pizza as possible during our trip. To this end, we entered Lombardi’s Pizza with our sights on a circular, flour-and-dough-based delicacy with oozing cheese and delicious red tomato sauce. We spied an offering that someone was eating at an adjacent table and we immediately commenced salivation, Pavlov’s Dog-style. However, this is where everything began to go awry.

We told them that we had three people –myself, the wife, and the little guy. They summoned a fellow to seat us but then we were told that our table was not quite ready. We waited a little longer. The fellow who was to seat us returned. We went to follow him, but he moved so quick that we lost him (toddlers aren’t exactly known for their swift ability to dodge oncoming servers with pies extended above their heads). We returned to the wait stand and asked something along the lines of “Uhhh…where are we supposed to sit again?” Finally, the guy who was supposed to seat us returned and escorted us at a more leisurely pace to an area in the basement that looked like a wine cellar. It was kind of odd, but we figured that they were just exiling us to the area since we had a kid, which incidentally is not a problem to me. I enjoy being able to eat without fearing that my kid is making someone else’s life a living hell. But we were not alone for long. The area was soon flooded with fellow human beings hungry for nourishment. All the while, Saucy Jr. was getting rammy, showing indications that he would not be long for his seat. Visions of smashed wine bottles began to dance in my head like so many bare-midriffed hootchies in a rap video.

A waitress showed up. To her credit, she did start with us first. I don’t know how she knew we were the first ones there since so many people flowed in at the same time, but she took our order, brought us water, all the earmarks of a very decent server. This being said, she couldn’t simply take our order and put it in to the kitchen. She now had to go greet at least six other tables, find out what they wanted to eat, take their drink orders, maybe laugh at the odd joke by a lonely pervert who has come in for the sole, express purpose of ogling and “charming” an unfortunate college-aged female. With Saucy Jr. reaching for the utensils and likely to stab one of us with them if forced to wait too long, we made what we feel was the wise decision: we bailed. We cancelled our order, gathered our things, and took off down the road.

Which brings us to Pinche Taqueria. The wife spied it as we were walking down the road. It looked empty (two ladies enjoying a [not] quiet [for long] conversation). This is key when you are sporting a child who seems primed for audible mischief. We entered and ordered the nachos, a steak burrito, and a fish taco. Everything was wonderful and quite authentic (in other words, the nachos were not covered with enough salt to satisfy a race horse and the burrito did not seem as if it had been soaked in butter for the length of a Presidential term). The nachos came with a well-applied amount of cheese, guacamole, beans, sour cream, and jalapenos. Accompanying the beef burrito was rice, onions, and beans, and I spruced it up with two different types of homemade hot sauce. It gave the burrito just the right amount of spicy kick. The fish taco I cannot attest to as I did not try it, but the wife certainly took it down and registered no complaints as to its sufficiency. After knocking back some of the free water for which they very nicely supplied Dixie cups, we were exiting the door heading for a nice little outing in Washington Square.

And that is where I must throw in a caveat: Maybe it is because I am a full-on, pasty-faced gringo, but I would advise that, if you plan on making a day of it in New York you may want to skip Pinche Taqueria, or make sure that you have surefire access to bathroom facilities. Right after we entered Washington Square (maybe a half hour after meal completion), I started to feel quite squirrely. To be less coy, I needed to evacuate waste with unbridled abandon. I went to use the facilities in the park. They didn’t smell very pleasing. Plus, I am fairly sure there was a homeless man in there talking to himself about his desire to commit premeditated murder. I tracked down Spicy and said we had to go on a hunt for a suitable commode. There aren’t a lot of touristy shops to duck into and I don’t think Alec Baldwin’s high-rise apartment was an option. Needless to say, I finally found a place for relief. It was a tea shop, the name of which escapes me. All I can say is I feel really badly for the person who had to follow me into that one-offer (in retrospect, it may have been the wife; sorry, Hon!).

So, to sum up: Lombardi’s looks like it has really awesome pizza, but it also was a bit of a clusterf*ck. As for Pinche Taqueria, definitely stop in if you are in the mood for some quick, cheap Mexican. However, make sure to bring your iron constitution and/or a map of the area’s finest bathroom stops.

Pinche Taqueria
227 Mott St.
New York, NY 10012
Pinche Taqueria on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. Man! Sounds good to they deliver to Spain?