Not easy to go out for dinner tonight in Salinas. We started at Orange Drive & South Main expecting to hit up the newish Thai place, and discovered it's closed on Mondays. So we cruised down Main, noting the closed restaurants along the way and wound up at the very end of the street in Oldtown at Mi Tierra. A first time for both of us here.
The house salsa with the complimentary chips was the typical with canned tomatoes, chopped onions and cilantro, but no chiles that I could detect. The lack of heat continued through the meal with my companion declaring his burrito chile colorado tasty but in need of more chile spice.
My order of albondigas took a while to come, however, it was worth the wait. A very rich chicken soup base flecked with oregano included potato, carrot, and four beefy meatballs lightened with rice and onion. A small dish of Spanish rice and refritos was served on the side along with limes and a choice of corn or flour tortillas. I should have asked for some jalapeño to spice it up, but I was satisfied nonetheless.
The reason to eat (or drink here) though would be the monster Chavela. Ordered with Negro Modelo, this hit a nice balance of clamato and citrus flavors along with a chile salt rim, shrimp, and celery garnish. A good way to hydrate after a long day.
129 Main St