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When you walk into a place and you see a little lady shredding meat with her hands, you know they mean business. At El Arriero Restaurante & Cerveceria you get a no frills take on authentic Mexican eats. Their menu is traditional, tacos, enchilada plates, flautas, etc; all at a very affordable price.

Your order comes with complimentary chips and salsa while you wait for your food. The chips came out nice and warm from the fryer, not greasy and insanely crisp. Their salsa, a red salsa with onion, jalapeno, tomato, and cilantro, was spicy. That’s saying a lot, because if I find it spicy, then that means others will probably be reaching for a glass of water after their first bite.

As my entree I ordered Enchiladas Potosinas, which is three red cheese enchiladas topped with papas and chorizo, with a side of refried beans and rice. There was nothing entirely special about the enchiladas. They were good, gooey from the cheese and not drowning in sauce. I prefer a dryer enchilada as opposed to those swimming in a soup like, sauce, so this was perfect. But flavor-wise it’s nothing that I’d dream about at night. The potatoes were lightly fried and tossed with a small amount of chorizo. Also, good, but nothing spectacular. I’m also told that enchilada potosinas are traditionally more of an empanada, but I’m no expert on Mexican food. The beans and rice were also good, but again, not amazing.

On my table they had a tent advertising shrimp cocktail ($6.99), so I had to try it. Shortly after placing my order I was met with a large glass filled with plump shrimp, avocado, celery, and cilantro swimming in a sea of cocktail sauce. The juice wasn’t thick like bottled sauces tend to be. The flavors all mingled perfectly and there was enough shrimp and avocado to be able to make every bite the perfect bite. It was served with saltine crackers and Tobasco sauce.

While my enchiladas weren’t the best that I’ve ever had, they were definitely good, and I’d have no problem returning to El Arriero for an affordable meal.

El Arriero
4151 N. Mesa St

El Arriero Restaurante & Cerveceria on Urbanspoon