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Pastores breakfast report: maybe a bit too homelike?

susancinsf | May 28, 200504:22 PM

Finally made it over to Pastores, the new Mexican place on Mission near Cortland, to check out breakfast...we didn't get there until nearly noon, but they were happy to serve me huevos rancheros. I imagine you could get breakfast all day.

Cedichou had mentioned that the place was non-frou-frou, with homemade food. He (She?) wasn't kidding. It is pleasant, with warm peach walls, and an attractive tile floor. However, the friend or family member (she might even have been the owner; I saw her get up to buss a table at one point), who sat at the counter in a full set of curlers (not even a scarf), and the 80's easy listening music blasting from the stereo, coupled with watching our server also wash dishes right under the tap behind the counter, made us feel as though we had walked into someone's private kitchen. Not as welcoming as one would think, particularly combined with service that was friendly but obviously not experienced....

Chips were brought right away. These weren't homemade: straight from a bag, though the salsa de tomatillo that was served with them was tasty with a good bite. The server understood much less English than her good accent would lead one to believe; we fared better with ordering once I switched to Spanish and translated for hubby.

Just before we were served, another member of the family came in from the street, and went straight to the stove to supervise the cooking (not stopping to wash her hands...)..between that, the curlers, and the dishwashing, I was starting to loose my appetite..

but here is the kicker: the huevos rancheros were hands down the best I have found in San Francisco! In fact, they were darn near perfect: eggs expertly fried over easy, each on a lovely, fresh corn tortilla, and covered with sauce. Adding a spoonful of the salsa verde that came with the chips livened up the thin tomato sauce on top (the thinness of the sauce was the only thing that kept these from being perfect huevos rancheros)... No more, no less, other than several slices of avocado and queso fresco as garnishes on the side. Moreover, at $5.75 including good coffee with refills, a downright bargain! Yumm!

I couldn't convince hubby to stick to breakfast to try the chilaquiles. Instead, he ordered enchiladas de pollo: personally, I doubt if the enchilada sauce was made from scratch (tasted like a good Mexican brand of canned red enchilada sauce to me), but I can't be sure, as the enchiladas were topped with at least two cups (and I am not exaggerating!) of crema and cheese! Hubby said they were pretty good, and did clean his plate, but just looking at them made me shudder at the calories and cholesterol...

Both dishes came with some rather ordinary Mexican rice, and delicious stewed pinto beans (these were obviously homemade).

Total for a big lunch for two with a soda for hubby and coffee for me was $17 with tax and tip.

I may have trouble dragging hubby back there, since the curlers *really* turned him off (and I can understand why), and the place will have to start doing more business (we were the only ones in there for most of our visit) and perhaps take itself more seriously as a restaurant, not just as someone's kitchen, if it hopes to succeed. However, I hope it does make it, and you can bet I'll be back when I need my huevos fix and don't want to make them in my own kitchen...


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