Friday, September 30, 2011

Mexican Food in Claremont That Does Not Disappoint

By Michael Baehr, aka the CLAIREMONT CHOWHOUND

Carmen’s Authentic Mexican Food

Just to let you in in on a little secret…I have added a new "favorite restaurant" in Clairemont to my short list of regular stops. It's Carmen’s Authentic Mexican Food on Diane Avenue. Carmen’s, related to another favorite Mexican restaurant, Maritza’s, lives up to its name of being truly authentic and flavorful. Don’t let the obscure location fool you, this place has been around for a while and has cultivated quite a loyal following.

While maybe not quite as friendly as the motherly Maritza’s, Carmen’s Restaurant is certainly another tasty Mexican force to be reckoned with. On a recent visit, we ordered two traditional combination meals, a surefire way to put any Mexican restaurant to the test. For my meal, I ordered a modified combination consisting of the carne asada enchilada and a beef taco with rice and beans ($8.95). The taco was filled with juicy and flavorful strips of beef and loads of cheese, lettuce and tomatoes. For added punch, small containers of house made salsa were included which takes the tacos to a whole new level.

The highlight of my meal was the carne asada in my enchilada, a house specialty. The meat was tender and juicy, smothered in cheese and delicately wrapped in a tortilla, soaked in flavorful sauce and topped with more cheese and lettuce. Wow, this Chowhound is drooling just thinking about it! As for the sides, the fluffy and delicate rice is among the best I have ever tasted . As for my dinner companion, he ordered a taco combination ($6.95) consisting of one beef taco, one chicken taco, rice and beans. He described the tacos as moist and flavorful, sometimes a rare find with taco dishes. And, if it’s any indication, I noticed that he devoured both crispy tacos in a matter of minutes as he exclaimed, “These tacos are amazing!” Enough said.

My only beef with Carmen’s is the $1 charge that was added to the bill because I chose to pay by credit card. In the age of electronic transactions, this should be a standard cost of doing business, but that’s just my opinion. Overall, Carmen’s Authentic Mexican Food is truly as authentic as freshly prepared Mexican food gets. As one diner recently exclaimed, “go to Carmen’s and your taste buds will thank you for it.”

Carmen’s Authentic Mexican Food
4937 Diane Avenue (between Clairemont Mesa Blvd. and Conrad Ave.)
San Diego, CA 92117
(858) 292-6018
Open Mon-Fri. 10-9, Sat. 10-8, Closed Sun.

1 comment:

  1. Hey, what good is a secret spot if you tell everybody!

    ReplyDelete

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