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Restaurants & Bars

The Simple Pleasures of La Reyna...

scrumptiouschef | Sep 14, 200705:28 PM     10

After a long ride in a four wheeled vehicle deep into South Austin I saddled up my brand new hog and rolled northward up S.1st street through Mexican restaurant alley.I was completely starving and my mind was racing with all the possibilities of Mexican deliciousness in the area.Ruled out Torchys[10 bucks for 2 Tacos and a beverage is usurious]....Habanero was closed...Tacqueria Arandas;good but weary of the menu...leaving me with La Reyna,one of my old stalwarts when I lived in the hood.

I love La Reyna's flour tortillas;with little blister marks and fatty flavor they make a fine shell for their carne asada[plump,slightly chewy beef filled with essence of steer]....grilled onions and a squeeze of lime is all you need to complete their taco experience.The thin yellow queso with lots of chiles is good....approaching Janitzio in quality but not quite there.The refried pintos have great texture but need more pork in their flavor profile ,nevertheless a little lime juice and salt make them perfectly acceptable.Chips and salsa are whisked to the table moments after you're seated and are good if unspectacular.Heavy cilantro content on the salsa,not enough heat but good fresh flavor.Chips are better than average due to their being served blazing hot.Service is very amiable,the waitresses are partying,happy to be nearing the end of the shift and off to their evenings' folly.

20 plus years of serving good,if unspectacular food to the Bouldin Creek neighborhood speaks clearly to La Reyna's appeal.I could list each item on their menu and rattle off 2 or 3 joints that are better on each count.Still,the menu and execution is solid,affordable and delivered in a friendly inviting atmosphere.If you've never been to La Reyna go.It's far superior to it's nearest neighbors;Polvos and La Mexicana which are both mystifyingly popular.

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