Well, I finally went to Tacos Corona Villa on the west side of Glendale Boulevard in Atwater.
Mrs. lil mikey had gone several weeks earlier while she was servicing her parakeet at the bird shop next door. So after that, every time we were on our way to Glendale to eat, we would pass by and I would hear about the virtues of this little taco hut.
This place is a Chowhound destination resort.
There are only about 6 stools at the counter, all of which were full when we went at about 11:20am last Saturday. There was a guy waiting for his order in the approximately 20 square feet behind the stools, and another guy standing in the doorway waiting to order. By the time we left, there were 4 other people waiting out on the sidewalk.
The menu is written on paper placemats affixed to the wall on the back of the place. Tacos are $1.00, Burritos are $3.00. There are also quesadillas and a few other items. You can get the tacos with chicken, steak, vegetables or chicken and potatoes. Same goes for the burritos. There is also a breakfast burrito with lots of stuff in it, $3.00. Most of the people sitting at the counter were having the breakfast burrito.
Behind the counter were a pair of women that may have been a mother-daughter team. Despite the crowd starting to form, they werent rushed in their preparation of the food. They were efficient in what they were doing, trading off cooking and order-taking duties.
Mrs. lil mikey informed me that the tacos were small, so I would need about 4 to fill me up. I thought Id try a burrito and a taco for the same $4, instead of just 4 tacos. So in went our order, 2 steak tacos and 2 steak burritos.
The ladies behind the counter were taking orders and preparing food in a manner that to me seemed like air traffic controllers guiding in the jumbo jets. Cool under pressure, but getting the job done. After about 10 minutes, the younger woman nodded at us, and the older woman brought over a paper sack $8.00. We paid and headed for home.
The smell was wafting out of the bag and into the car. I was starting to notice myself getting REALLY hungry, and my mouth was starting to water. Thankfully we were home in about 10 minutes.
We raced up the stairs, and opened up the bag. First the tacos. Mrs. lil mikey was right about the size. These tacos are small. Theyre about 3 across. They each have 2 little corn tortillas, and are stuffed to overflow with really good steak. The steak is not fatty at all. Its juicy, but not greasy. Also in there is a perfect salsa of onion, cilantro and jalapeno. Theres no lettuce or tomato or cheese. Just meat and the onion mixture. It is really tasty. In hindsight, I actually like that they are small. I think next time Ill get a taco with each of the 4 fillings to try them out.
After the tacos came the burritos. Now for $3, I dont expect much. I was therefore pleasantly surprised by the size of this burrito. It fills your hand, and the warm flour tortilla is soft and fresh. In the burrito is about the same amount of steak as the taco, but there are also beans, not refried, just regular kidney beans, and rice. And there is the same onion mixture to season it.
After the burrito, I was satisfied. And for $4, this is going to be a regular place for the lil mikeys.
Places like these are the reason I read Chowhound. What a find. And we may never have tried this place without a Chowhound howl.