Thursday, February 24, 2011

Pupuseria El Buen Gusto

I am pretty obsessed with Yelp, so sometimes while I am driving around I like to use the application on my phone and "search nearby" to see if I can find any hidden gems (don't worry Mom, only while I ride passenger seat). Pupuseria El Buen Gusto popped up, and they had 4 1/2 Stars, which is rare, so I decided to read the reviews which were all great so I knew that I had to try this place.

I have never had Salvadorean food and it claimed to be very authentic, so I decided to ask my friend Ed if he would come try it with me. He read the reviews and based on the claims agreed to try it out with me.
G, E and I set out around 7pm Thursday night to try this place. Although not hard to find, this is not a place I would have discovered without googling around Fairfax for Hispanic or Salvadorean food as it is tucked away in the corner of the shopping center. This place is really close to GMU, about a 5 minute drive away.

After we find the restaurant, we go inside and it is as small as the reviews claim-3 booth seats and a bar seating area with 4/5 stools.  Luckily we managed to grab a booth seat.
When the waitress came over to get our drink orders, I decided to go all out and tell E to order me something authentic. He ordered us Horchatas $2.99, a milk-like drink that can include ground cocoa, cinnamon, sesame seeds, nutmeg, tigernuts, vanilla and rice(correction thanks to Rose, I am pretty sure it has rice, but they didn't tell me what was included so I googled the possible ingredients). It was a pretty tasty, a little heavy and it seemed more like a dessert to me. I would get this drink again, although I don't know if I would get it here because of the price.
They also brought us out some chips and salsa. This was very good, but it was a very small portion.
Next we decided to get 3 Pupusas, a traditional Salvadorean dish, for our appetizer, $1.99 each. We got the Queso, which was E's favorite. I thought it was pretty tasty but I am not a huge fan of large portions of cheese. Next we got the Chicharrón(pork) con queso which was good (E's least fav) and the Chicharrón, loroco, queso and frijoles(beans) which was my favorite. They were served with marinated cabbage and some sort of salsa. I was told that the salsa was not the normal sauce that was typically served with this dish. It didn't really go well with the pupusas but the cabbage went really well. 
(blogger apparently won't let you rotate pictures and they insert them in the way they think best so I apologize for the vertical view)
I decided to order the Tacos de Carne Asada $8.99 served with pico de gallo and an avocado slice. I chose to get the flour tortillas(instead of corn). I really liked these-quality meat and flavored well, and the pico and avocado were fresh. G thought it was a little weird that they put radish in the pico, but I didn't notice a difference in the taste.
E got the Plato Tipico $8.99 which includes two pupusas, a chicken tamale, rice and beans. He liked his dish a lot. I tried a bite of his tamale and I thought it was pretty good, it was a different consistency than tamales that I have had before.
G got Carne Deshilada for $11.99, shredded tender flank steak cooked with eggs(you had the option to get without eggs) served with rice, beans and a slice of avocado on the side. I really liked this dish, the eggs and shredded steak were an interesting but very tasty combo and G seemed to enjoy it too.
Our final bill ended up being $50.59, which is not too bad considered we were all stuffed, and had some left overs. Some of the things are a little pricey, like the Horchatas.This is typical of a "hole in the wall" restaurant. They didn't have fountain drinks and they don't serve tap water, so be prepared to shell out some dough if you get thirsty.

The service was great, our server was very helpful, and when G left his "doggie bag" on the table she ran out and gave it to him.

Next time I am craving some tacos, I would definitely call and order carryout or come eat in again to try some of their other specialties.Based on the size of the place, be prepared to order takeout if there is no room to sit.

10012 Main Street
Fairfax, VA 22031
Pupuseria El Buen Gusto on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. idk about this Horchata. I've never had Latin Horchata but Mexican Horchata is made with rice and it's epic. The lack of rice is throwing me off ;) However, Papusas are one of the greatest things, I'll def be checking this place out. Thanks lady! PS Buddah Bar soon?!