The other day I went downtown to buy a ticket for tonight’s Kaiser Chiefs concert in Victoria. Ian came with me, and after my successful purchase, we went browsing at the Salvation Army. To my utter delight I spied a copy of ZZ Top’s Tres Hombres mixed in amongst all the Zamfir, Barbara Streisand, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s The Sound of Music etc. on the vinyl shelf. Pulling it out however proved it was too good to be true; the sleeve was in decent shape, but the record was missing. Nevertheless, Tres Hombres is home to one of the most delicious looking photographs of food that you will ever see, so I bought it based on it’s worthiness as a wall ornament. Looking at it made us hungry though, and so our afternoon now had a new quest: find Mexican food in Victoria that looked like the photograph.
This was unfortunately a lot easier said than done. Ian’s initial suggestion of La Taquisa was met with strong objections from me because it is a chain restaurant. I wanted something authentic. But upon realizing that there was no obvious choice, and that La Taquisa was probably the only place within walking distance, I acquiesced to give it a chance. As we walked there, I got the bright idea to open up the record sleeve and show the mouth watering photo to everyone on the street. This was quite fun, with many a curious gaze received, until someone addressed us in a rather eloquent manner of speech, “gentlemen, that is a very intriguing photo that you have there, too bad I am homeless and would like something to eat.” I immediately stopped showing the photo, and we chuckled at our stupidity to lessen the shame.
Upon arrival we encountered a mass of people swarming in line to order their generic looking tacos, and then sit in the poppy, modern looking, soon to be considered dated and ugly, sitting area, which reminded me of a food court, not a restaurant. The food did not even look like our photo… We somehow ended up in line though, and were slowly herded towards the front. I wanted beer, like in the photo, and when I suddenly realized that La Taquisa did not serve beer, I literally put my foot down and marched out. On the street I ranted, “every single restaurant on Earth should offer beer, there’s no reason why if someone wants a beer with their meal they shouldn’t be able to have it!” Ian found my method of finding a lunch spot hilarious, and we began to wander around aimlessly. We made a brief appearance at the Pink Bicycle burger joint, only to discover that there was no Mexican themed burger on the menu, and so our search continued.
Around this time, Ian remembered a little Mexican place down near the Strathcona. I thought he was talking about the little Texas BBQ place in the same area, and I decided that Texan would be better than fake Mexican, so I agreed. I was thus delighted when we came across his Mexican place first, and walked in to see a menu with photographs that suited our quest much better than anything at La Taquisa. I promptly showed my photograph to the order taker and asked him what I should order if I wanted to eat like I was in ZZ Top. He recommended the enchiladas, and I decided that despite his Hispanic accent and job, he was wrong, and I needed a chimichanga, so I ordered one of those instead. Ian ordered the enchiladas, and presto, his plate looked a lot more like the photo than mine did. Despite my stupidity, my food was delicious, and when I cut it up and slathered it in salsa, the link was more believable. Even though La Fiesta Café was not the most authentic of locations either (the interior was reminiscent of a fast food restaurant) they did serve beer, and so we were able to enjoy a Dos Equis with our lunch. There is nothing particularly good or bad about Dos Equis, except that it pairs well with Mexican food.
After eating, we took a bus back to Ian’s place and listened to his copy of ZZ Top’s Fandango!