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Viva El Mariachi, Astoria

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Viva El Mariachi, Astoria

Eric Eto | Jan 28, 2005 10:30 AM

After reading several recommendations for this Viva El Mariachi, I finally checked it out to see what the fuss was about. My usual benchmarks for a first time visit are tacos: al pastor, carnitas, and lengua (tongue). The al pastor was the marinated-meat-seared-on-the-grill variety, and not the good stuff you get from a vertical spit. Not bad, but pretty average. The lengua had no flavor. It was kind of strange, but the flavor was so faint, but doctoring it up with salt and salsa improved it. The upnote to this is that the carnitas were very good. Way above average. Nice caramely crispy edges, and good pork flavor. A keeper. The salsa that comes with the chips is also above average. The other salsas were a little humdrum. I'm not sure if these factors are enough for me to go out of my way to get to Viva El Mariachi, but if I'm in the area, I may drop in for some carnitas.

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