After a recent post requesting suggestions for non chain eating in Vacaville, I decided to explore downtown during a shopping trip.
All I can say at this point is, if anyone on any of the boards starts complaining about chains again, I'm going to buy them a one way ticket to Vacaville and make them eat at the local restaurants.
Jack in the Box was starting to look good.
To me, it seems that the best bet would be Mexcian.
TAQUERIA LA COSTA
The best food I had in Vacaville was a 99 cent chicken taco here. It is part of a Mexican market that has La Reyna Carenceria. So sharing a space with a meat market promised good eats. It was.
The taco was one of the small type in two soft corn tortillas and a nice spicy sauce and salsa. Very good. They have birrea and menudo on the weekends. Since the taco was so good, I may try the torta next time I'm in the area. I was unfortunately saving my appetite for Baldo's.
The taqueria is located in a Mexican strip mall on 887 Depot Street. It is next door to the Latino Family Services Center. All products in the market are in Spanish. Huge pinata's hang from the ceiling and Spanish farm music was playing while I was there.
There was a taco truck I passed, but it was like, 200 degrees in the shade. There's only so much I'll put up with.
LOARD'S ICE CREAM
I guess this is a company that has been in business for 50 years in the Bay Area. Never heard of them. They are on the Baskin Robbins idea with 45 flavors. The fresh banana scoop I had was very good. Link to site below. At 1017 Alamo in the Golden Hills strip mall.
I now start my culinary slide.
2001 FLAVORS PLUS POTATOES
A combination ice cream/potato shop caught my imagination. I still want to meet the person who thought this up. If the food was better, I'd suspect Jim Leff.
Basically vanilla/chocolate ice cream or yogurt. Low fat, full fat, low sugar, full sugar. Then there's a bunch of stuff, frozen berries, peaches, cookies, etc, etc, etc. Pick what you want, the ice cream and stuff gets blended together. I chose vanilla yogurt and frozen peaches ... buzz, buzz, mix, mix ... tasteless peach colored yogurt with gritty pieces of frozen peach.
Since it was hot enough to bake potatoes in the car, I passed on this. But same idea. Potato shells, filled with mashed potatoes and stuffings. The potato lite had broccoli, cottage cheese, green onions, mushrooms and mozzarella. The Conqueso had cheddar, sour cream, jalepenos, olives and salsa.
Shave ice. salads, sandwiches, Italian sodas, coffee drinks, etc, etc, available. 300 E. Monte Vista Blvd.
OK, ok, I'm TRYING to avoid chains and I stop at 2 (Loards and 2001 flavors). But I tell you, even if they are NOT chains they TRY to look like them in Vacaville. which brings be to....
THE ORIGINAL MERMAID'S SEAFOOD AND GRILL.
There were lot's of cars here at lunch, so I went in although the idea of seafood in Vacaville should have sent off bells.
I ordered the fish tacos ... they came with ranch dressing and were burried under Kraft shredded cheese, topped with salsa. Enuf said.
Well, not really. In the middle of farm country the fresh salsa had tasteless mushy tomatoes. To be fair, when you dug through the cheese, the fish was not bad. It is hand battered. I actually asked if this was a chain since it had that sort of Chevy's ambiance. It isn't, but I think if they try a little harder, they could be.
Not a bad place to take the kids. Food comes in neat fishing boats. Next time I might order one of those cool boats myself. They have Cioppino Thursday nights.
Oh yeah, they have funnel cakes, and mussels, and steamers, and maryland crab. This might have some possibilities. Also, I think it was the manager, really took some pride in what he was serving. So I think the place tries. The menu is on a second link about Vacaville that I'll be posting. Located on 780 Merchant Street.
BALDO'S MEXICAN FOOD
This was a major disappointment because it showed the most promise. A 24 hour Mexican restaurant with drive thru that had horchata, tortas, fish tacos, chorizo, ,machaca and Mexican breakfasts. I saw myself making pit stops on the way to and from Reno. NOT.
I had a blackend machaca torta. This was not a Cajun take on Mexican. It was burnt and really, really black. The fish taco could have had lettuce on it. It could have been cabbage. Who could tell. Mayonaise and Gorton's type of fish sticks. I should have known when the horchata was too sweet with no spice. All was tossed after a few bites. Four dollars wasted. If you care, 936 Merchant.
Driving around, it seemed like there were a few good looking Mexican joints in town. Will to a separate post on promising looking places.