Los Panchos Mexican Food, Gretna, LA Report #93


In honor of Cinco De Mayo I had to eat some Tex-Mex food today!  My favorite place for that type of cuisine is El Paso (Report #9).  But on Cinco De Mayo, an illegal alien would have a better chance of getting into Trump Tower than I would have getting into that place.  It’s packed.   So I remembered Los Panchos.  It’s off the beaten path so I figured it would be pretty empty.  After I dined there I realized there was probably another reason it was pretty empty.

I hadn’t been here in maybe 10 years, but I always bragged about their Chile Rellenos.  They used to have the best I ever had.  The rest of the food was pretty good too.

As they all do, they start you off with the little pitcher of salsa and a basket of chips.  The chips were nice and fresh.  We also ordered the ground beef and cheese dip and it was very good.  That was about where the good ended.

When we ordered I started off by saying, “I’ll start with the Shrimp Cocktail”.  Besides that, that dish is listed in the “Appetizers” section of the menu.  All the rest of the food came out first.  I asked the waitress what happened to the shrimp cocktail?  She said, “Oh, I’ll go get it”!  I told her I wanted it as an appetizer so forget about it now.  She said, “But it’s already ready”.  So I told her to go ahead and bring it to me.

This was NOT a shrimp cocktail by my standards.  To me a shrimp cocktail consists of large, tail on shrimp, dangling on the rim of a glass, with their upper bodies dunked in a cocktail sauce.  This consisted of some medium size shrimp, hidden beneath a liquidy cold soup that tasted like a mix of ketchup and V8 juice, with some slices of avocado, onions, cilantro and tomato chunks in it.  I have no idea what the crackers were for.  Or the lime wedges.  Maybe that’s considered a shrimp cocktail in Mexico?  If so I’ll never have one there again either.

My dining partner had the beef chimichanga dinner.  The chimichanga wasn’t crisp at all.  Nothing special about the beef.  Nothing special about the dish at all for that matter.

I was kind of in the mood for something different so I started to try the Lengua (beef tongue) plate, but decided instead on the Enchiladas Rancheras plate, with one shredded beef and one cheese enchilada.  The dish came out room temperature so the cheese in the cheese enchilada was hard.  There was nothing to brag about with the rest of the dish either.

And finally, the one thing I knew they did well.  The Chile Relleno.  I used to love theirs so much I ordered one a la carte.  It used to consist of a nice, mild green chile pepper, stuffed with cheese, deep fried in a delicious batter then covered with cheese sauce.  This one was terrible.  The batter was crumbly and unappetizing, and if there was any cheese stuffed in the chile pepper it was invisible.

If you want a place to have chips and dip, this place fits the bill.  As far as everything else we had tonight, I wouldn’t recommend it.

445 Terry Pkwy, Gretna, LA  70056  Ph: 504-368-0828

Blaine 5-5-2018


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