Driving my parents around for their errands on Monday, I was surprised to see "La Costa" emblazoned on the street sign that had said "Roy's" the whole time I've been alive. Yet, I was happy to see the drive-in alive again. We made a stop to check it out, with my mother advising me to get one thing as a test case.
The specialty here is mariscos of the cold variety. Oysters on the half shell ($1 apiece), tostadas with various marinated seafood and ceviches, and cokteles. What caught my eye were the words "campechana" and "agua chile". I inquired about the agua chile and it sounded just like what I've been looking for. All shrimp (even though the menu says 'seafood') cooked by lime juice and very hot chile water, plus avocado, cucumber, and red onions. Available as "super" only for $11, which was a quart size, along with tostadas, saltines, quartered limes, and packets of ketchup and Tapatio hot sauce.
At home we divvied out a rice bowl size appetizer portion for each of us and still had more than half left. My dad enjoyed it, but soon the burn got to be too much for him. It was too spicy for my mom and she wasn't too keen on the near raw, soft texture of the prawns. I thought it was great and as good as the version at Mariscos La Costa in Oakland's Fruitvale. I had the rest of it for lunch --- by then the shrimp had firmed up to close to cooked texture.
1306 N. Main St.
4152 Monterey Rd.
1805 Alum Rock Ave.