Thursday, June 25, 2009
Amo chill-ee Colorado
Meatloaf is often the yardstick I use to measure the quality of a meat-and-three. If an eatin' place can turn out a juicy, well-seasoned hunk o' meatloaf, 9 times out of 10 it can turn out quality fried chicken, mashed taters, green beans, etc.
When it comes to Hispanic restaurants, chile colorado is my yardstick. For those who don't know, chile colorado features chunks of beef in a spicy red sauce. When chile colorado's done right, the beef is juicy and the sauce is equal parts fresh tomato and spice; when it's done wrong, the beef is chewy and the sauce tastes like it came from a can.
I was in a hole-in-the-wall Mexican joint in Atlanta some 15 years ago when I had my first plate of chile colorado. The menu said it featured "spicy beef," and that was description enough for me to give it a try. I liked it so much I've ordered it in practically every south-of-the-border restaurant I've visted since. That's no lie.
Now, there's a little restaurant in South Nashville called Las Americas. It's an El Salvadorean restaurant that's well-regarded for the quality of its pupusas. [Note: some folks swear that Las Americas is Nashville's pupusería. That's a subject I'll broach in a future AMGE post.] It should also be, well, regarded for the qualitly of its chile colorado as well.
Simply put, Las Americas has the best chile colorado in Nashville ... period. The chunks o' beef - with visible grill marks - are so very tender, and the spicy sauce in which said chunks o' beef is served is "home-made" thick with onions, tomato, cilantro, and spices. To wit:
... that's more than plenty o' chile colorado, rice, beans, slaw, and a corn tortilla you see there. And I wish I was eatin' it now!
Las Americas Market Internacional
4715 Nolensville Pike
Nashville, TN 37211