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Restaurants & Bars 4

Los Pepes Reno

janetofreno | Mar 12, 2015 12:53 PM

As I mentioned elsewhere, this taqueria is the latest reincarnation of the building at the corner of Wells and Winston in Reno (across Wells and slightly north from the Livestock Events Center). Most recently it was a panaderia, which I loved, but sadly it closed just a few months after opening. (DH and I have a theory that customers stopped coming because it was unbearably hot inside....a combination of ovens, big southeast-facing windows that make the place resemble a greenhouse, and inadequate air conditioning).

Well, first of all, I am happy to say that the heat problem seems to have been solved. It was warm inside, but not unbearably so. And I heard the distinct humm of an air conditioner. Furthermore, large ceiling fans have been installed. They weren't running today, but hopefully they will have them on come summer. Furthermore, the place has been nicely re-decorated with bright paint in several colors and a clean, airy feel.

I went in around 10:30 am, and was the only person in the house. It is open from 6am every day, and would make a good breakfast place (particularly if you were attending an event at the Livestock Center). I was planning on Huevos Rancheros, but then saw a sign at the door "Today's Special: Albondigas with corn tortillas hecho a mano. $5.00" Who could resist??

The soup was a medium-sized portion, with two HUGE meatballs and plenty of vegetables in a beefy broth. Not too salty but a bit of a kick. The meatballs were tender, with a fair amount of rice mixed in. Delicioso! It came with a side of some chipotle salsa (which I ignored), along with home-made chips and a tasty salsa verde. And the promised tortillas. Yes, they were hand-made (well, maybe with a tortilla press:-) and they were HUGE (seven to eight inches in diameter). They came in a tortilla warmer and there were four of them...more than I intended to eat, but they tasted so good! I ate every bite and thought of my twin Susan. I've been trying to get her to visit my new place in Reno...maybe the knowledge that there is a decent bowl of albondigas with tortillas hecho a mano within easy walking distance will lure her?? :-)

There is no sign yet, so I asked for the name. I guess a couple of Pepes own the place. The server was friendly and efficient and spoke perfect English. (Although another woman - whom I had noticed cooking in the back; you can see into the kitchen from the counter - did come and offer me more tortillas in Spanish. I wish I would have had room for them!).

I felt guilty about paying only 5 bucks for so much delicious food, so I left about a 50% tip. I still got off cheap:-) I hope some of the Reno hounds will give them some well-deserved business. As for me, I'll be back (maybe even Sunday:-) for the advertised "Birria on weekends"

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