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El Paso II, Grocery/Torta/Taco Stand


Jason Perlow
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Moderator Note: This storefront changed owners in August 2006, but it hasn't changed too much, so I just changed the name of the thread rather than close it. Rachel

Jhlurie and I went into the Mi Pueblo grocery on 71 Washington Ave in Bergenfield today. This small Mexican grocery is stocked with all kinds of provisions - including good Chorizo and store-made carne enchilada and cecina (aged beef). A nice surprise is if you walk to the back of the store, there is a small counter where a friendly grill guy, Domingo, who speaks little to no english, will make you a dozen or so varieties of some of the best tacos mexicanos you will ever eat. They cost 4 for 5 bucks, and while not huge in size, are quite filling. They also have Tortas on the menu but we didnt have a chance to try those. We had the Carne (pork), Carne Enchilada (spicy pork), Pollo (chicken), Chorizo (spicy sausage) and Cecina (aged beef). We didnt have the chance to try the Bisteck (steak) because he was out. We were there at around 3:30 in the afternoon, which seems to be a good time to go to avoid the lunch crowds.

By far, we feel these are probably the best tacos in the entire area that we have yet had, including those at either El Gran Mexicano in Bogota or Cinco de Mayo in Bergenfield, although those places are still quite good for other items. The tacos at those other places are also worth having, especially if you are going out to dinner, as Mi Pueblo closes down its grill at 4PM, but for a lunching experience or afternoon snack Mi Pueblo is perfect.

A wide selection of Mexican sodas was also avaliable.

Edited by Rachel Perlow (log)

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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We have to go back sometime soon. Next time we eat 10 each instead of 5. :biggrin: Taco Bell should burn in hell (Can an entire franchise burn in hell? Would they put the fire out with a cool refreshing Pepsi?) when Mexican food which tastes like this is available for pretty much the exact same price.

Edited by jhlurie (log)

Jon Lurie, aka "jhlurie"

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  • 4 weeks later...

I got brought along today for tacos. Whoa, really really good. And big. Well not big, diameter-wise, but more filling (meat-wise) than any of the other local authentico Mexican joints. The pile of chopped up bits of bisteca, pollo, carnitas, and chorizo (garnished with onion and cilantro) completely covered the doubled tortillas. Garnishes on the side of the plate included sliced radish, wedges of lime and optional pickled peppers and carrots. My favorite was the chorizo, the nice crispy bits are reminiscent of bacon - a squeeze of lime and you're good to go.

Totally worth a long drive, especially if you want to stock up on dried chiles or the entire line of Goya products. The inventory of the store was very orderly and clean, much nicer than many of the other bodegas in the area.

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  • 2 years later...

Host Note: Threads merged, Fink is talking about Mi Pueblo. - Rachel

So, Mrs Fink and I are in Bergenfield last week looking for lunch and we are in the same old debate, me, I want something interesting and new and the wife just doesn't want anything. A spat waiting to happen, Cuban? no, too much meat, Thai, to spicy for today, Philipino? Too weird. Indian? I've got a meeting tomorrow. Well, moments before we go get chinese (enough veggies, mild is easy, it sure isn't weird and I don't get the meeting thing.) we notice a mexican market that says tacaria (sp) in the corner of the window. I put my foot down and say "We are going to eat Mexican!" Being a good wife and in the end having good taste (she married me didn't she) She eagerly agreed. In we went. You walk into a single store front lined with Mexican Groceries and continue on into the rear where ther are 4 tables or so and a counter with a couple seats and a large plasma TV with soccer (futbol) on it. The menu is authentic as you can get with gorditas con chicharones (yummy) Chilaquillas with eggs or chicken and green or red sauce. About a dozen different tacos and a whole world of other stuff. Unfortunately I didn't come here and post right after we ate so I forgot the rest of the menu but it looked real good and was VERY cheap. I recomend everyone go there now. Why are you still reading, you should be in your car going, now..... Oh yes where is it? Well I can't find a menu and I don't recall the address, but if you are coming up bedford ave. (the street that had chez monique before the fire) and barely bear right when you reach washington ave and keep going you will drive into the market, so you may want to park on delford and walk to the store. So now there is no excuse, go, now!!!!

Fink

Edited by Rachel Perlow (log)

The best part of the Guiniea Pig? The Cheeks! Definately the cheeks!!

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I think you're talking about Mi Pueblo, if so, I'll merge these two threads. They used to just have counter space in the back by the grill. Perhaps they've added tables? We'll have to check that out soon.

I just read the other thread- yowza. I'm so there. I need to stock up on dried chiles anyway and I really should break myself of the habit of going down to Englewood for that stuff. Chorizo, too.

I love the cecina and lengua at La Batalla, but am really intrigued by the other thread about Mi Pueblo. Thanks in advance, Rachel and Fink.

aka Michael

Chi mangia bene, vive bene!

"...And bring us the finest food you've got, stuffed with the second finest."

"Excellent, sir. Lobster stuffed with tacos."

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  • 2 weeks later...

I made it there today for some supplies and tacos, and am glad I did. At first the grocery section seemed a little too streamlined and compact for what I expected, but in the end I was able to get pretty much what I came in for and put a few other items on the old mental list. They have more El Yucatecos than I have seen before- including a chipotle flavor- plus a few Bufalo sauces at very reasonable prices (The Bufalo Chipotle is only $1.09 a bottle and the El Yucatecos are just a little more than that). The dried chiles are in the back on a high shelf in what I guess you would call bulk packages. The guajillos seem to be of very good quality (I haven't cooked with them yet but they have a nice aroma and are quite pliable) at $6 for a large bag (3 quarts, maybe?). The refrigerated section features some killer poblanos and tomatillos. I forgot to look for fresh epazote, but I do know that they have dried. Anyway- I'm very happy with what I found there.

The tacos are what has been described above- very good stuff indeed, definitely on par with La Batalla up the road. The squirt bottle sauces (verde and chipotle)are better by a long shot, imho, much more vibrant. On the side I was given some braised (?) spring onions and slices of pickled cactus. Just a hell of a lunch for 5 bucks. I'll definitely be back soon.

aka Michael

Chi mangia bene, vive bene!

"...And bring us the finest food you've got, stuffed with the second finest."

"Excellent, sir. Lobster stuffed with tacos."

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  • 4 months later...

I noticed just tonight that Mi Pueblo is no more- there is a sign up indicating the change to the new name of El Paso II as of this past Thurs. Whether that means a significant change or not I cannot say because I just noticed it from the window of the market across the street and didn't go in... I just thought it was worth noting for now.

Edited by TongoRad (log)

aka Michael

Chi mangia bene, vive bene!

"...And bring us the finest food you've got, stuffed with the second finest."

"Excellent, sir. Lobster stuffed with tacos."

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El Paso is the other one in Englewood. I think they do a good job, my main issue is seating, but thats obviously solved with the size of the new place.

I'm sad to see Mi Pueblo go, though. I liked their food a lot.

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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amazing. you snooze, you lose! i've been reading about this place but just havent been able to get there this summer. i guess i'll have to continue going to astoria for my taco fix when i'm on the GCP. and I needed epizote and anchos too.

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Jason had some tacos for lunch at El Paso II yesterday and when I got home from work he mentioned that they have paletas (Mexican fruit popsicles). I've loved paletas since becoming obsessed with them as made at Loco Pops in Durham NC. The ones at El Paso are made by El Paleton and come in many flavors. They charge $1.25 for the juice based ones and $1.50 for the milky ones. So refreshing on a hot summer day.

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