After a two year hiatus we found ourselves strolling Beverly Dr. with the 10 month old, looking for some dinner and Urth Cafe wasn't going to cut it... so we gave Frida a chance, despite not wanting a repeat of our last bill ($250 for 2).
> We opted for the sidewalk seating which is very nice with the baby... as the surprisingly affectionate locals walking by kept entertaining her for us.
> First of, I should note that Frida has come down scale a few notches. The wine list has gotten reaaaally small... and they have dropped any hope of being able to source Mexican wines. Further... their aging, worn faux Talavera ceramics reminds me of a lower rent Sanborn's.
> Cocktails.... with the possibility of a nice Casa Madera, Chateau Camou or Monte Xanic wine out of the realm of possibilities.... I asked for a paloma. The ditsy, struggling actress took the order without batting an eyelash... but then came back saying they didn't have the requisite Grapefruit soda. I let them make it with Sprite & it was still pretty good ($10).
> Complimentary Chips & Salsa... chips were good but I hate that they offer this. I don't go to real Mexican restaurants to eat chips! The 3 Salsas (smooth thin green, pico de gallo, smooth thin red) were all good.... the red (arbol & tomato based) was the best of the three.
> Opting for a light meal we both went with the Pozole... wife had chicken I had the seafood. They were both very, very good if lacking some heat. The broth was flavorful with Guajillo & Hominy... the shrimp & fish were fresh & perfectly textured, the requisite side dish of garnishes were nice... except for the unsightly strands of purple cabbage. One of the best Pozoles anywhere in West L.A. ($12)
> Nopalitos.... these are on the sides menu and one of the best bargains in town. Very finely sliced veggies, slightly wilting with roasted flavors & pungent Cotija cheese ($3)
> Queso.... this is also on the sides menu. The ditsy server assured me it was a wedge of Fresco... instead it turned out to be grated Cotija. Good but different. ($3)
> Homemade Tortillas... this is definitely the best deal in Beverly Hills. 5 small tender, aromatic & delicious for $1.
>> Mental Note... before ordering drinks.... ask for Tortillas & Cotija to make little appetizer tacos rather than eat chips.
The service is a bit clueless, its come downscale a bit, but the food was very tasty, authentic & satisfying and the bill was only $50.... not bad for the a high rent place like Beverly Hills that is also jam packed with mediocre food.