Friends who live in East County have been talking about their favorite Mexican place for a few months now and finally got me to go there with them on my last visit to town. They said it was "Mexico City Cuisine," so I was expecting some fancy place serving corn smut. Instead, Ranas is a small, informal eatery in the back of a strip mall (behind a Carl's Junior) at the Kenwood exit off the 94. Never having been to Mexico City, I have no idea if the food is authentic, but it certainly was tasty and different.
The owners were present and friendly. They even brought over little paper cups with samples of the specials that day, so I got a taste of several items, all of which I wanted to order. The specials came with pretty good rice and standard frijoles. We had a pibil cochinita which was very good and a tuna Veracruz (except that it had a different name) which was also tasty. But the little tastes that I had of the peanut butter chicken, the spicy pork and nopales, and the albondigas (a very differnet preparation than the albondigas soup I'm familiar with) all made me wish I had more than one stomach so I could have eaten them all. The fat corn tortillas, allegedly the same as at Porkyland, were excellent as well.
I don't know if this food is worth driving across SD for, but it was interesting, different, and tasty. I would gladly return.
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