The description of panbazos in the link below were just too much to resist. I made the 20 mile drive from Sacramento to visit Cuatro Milpas in Woodland, and it was worth it.
The panbazo is a torta with chorizo and potatoes, with lettuce, cheese, crema, and salsa. The whole thing is dipped in enchilada sauce and grilled panini-style. The enchilada sauce was mild, the whole thing had just a gentle touch of spice, even though I asked them to make it as hot as possible. Nevertheless, it was an extremely satisfying meal. All of the ingredients were in balance, no single item stood out above the others. I've never had one of these in Mexico City, where they originated, so I can't say if they are as good as "back home." But it was GOOOOOOD. A steal at $4.
I also tried a Mexico City quesadilla ($2.75). They take fresh masa, shape it into a disk, fill it with jack/mozarella cheese or potatoes, fold it into a half moon shape, then deep fry it. It's served topped with shredded lettuce, salsa, and queso cotija. This, also, was very good. The masa is wonderful and has a unique texture. If you draw an equilateral triangle and put on each corner: tamale, tortilla, and chip, in the center you will have the quesadilla. It was reminiscent of all three, but distinctly different enough to be its own thing.
Both were so good that I ordered a second round to go and took them back to Erika's family. They were devoured within moments.
All manner of tacos, burritos, enchiladas, chiles rellenos, and other common Mexican American dishes are served. Pozole and menudo is also available on the weekends. Beer is served. Raspados are available via a machine sitting in front of the store, though it's not operating all the time and I forgot to ask what the hours were. This is really a very casual restaurant and not a tacos to go place: you get to sit down, order off a menu, and have your food brought to you.
An elderly Mexican woman does all the cooking in the back. A very pleasant and friendly young woman waits the tables. She spoke perfect English and Spanish. She said she's planning on rewriting the menu soon to add a few more Mexico City specialties and to add more robust descriptions of each dish so those unfamiliar with the cuisine can learn more.
This place is definitely worth a trip from Sacramento or Davis or for those passing by Woodland on I-5. Add it to the guide!
Cuatro Milpas -- Woodland, CA
500 block on Main Street, about a mile off I-5.
They also run a taco truck in Knights Landing.
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