Friday, July 27, 2012

El Mana in Midvale, Utah; formerly El Taconazo

Often, I get food & restaurant recommendations from people that I know. It's like when you are on a trip and want some good, non-touristy food, you ask the locals and rarely do they disappoint. Last Fall, my brothers, Dad and I were on a road trip through Tennessee and Mississippi. In Lawrenceburg Tennessee I asked two different locals about what place they would recommend for dinner. They both said "The Brass Lantern." We did not second guess and yes, the food was fabulous.

A good friend recommended El Taconazo in Midvale. This is one of those joints where the building isn't exactly updated but the food is authentic cooking. Thankfully I was to meet this friend there because I could not find El Taconazo. He texted me that it was now El Mana.

They bring out chips and salsa as an appetizer. The chips are homemade; very thick, crispy, and tasty-just the right amount of salt. The salsa was mild but had a very deep, rich, fresh flavor. It was wonderful.

For lunch I ordered the Enchiladas Mole: 2 chicken enchiladas covered in mole sauce, cheese, and red onions served with rice and beans. The chicken was cooked perfectly, the cheese had a nice texture but was pretty mild, the mole sauce was great but very spicy.

I believe that this is the second time that I have eaten Mole; and I like it. Some are tame but not this one. After you took a bite, you immediately gulped some water. I asked the waiter how it was made and he said that he had no idea. One recipe I found included 5 New Mexican chilis, 2 Guajillo chiles, 3 Chipotle chilis, and 4 Ancho chilis. You get the picture; it's not for the faint of heart (in the spicy category).

The portions are large (or they seem that way after filling up on chips & salsa), the atmosphere is very relaxed and the prices are great. Each dish was around $8.00. If you are driving down State St. in Midvale, Utah, stop by.

El Mana
7962 S. State St.
Midvale, Utah, 84047

 Happy Eating
El Mana on Urbanspoon


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