Saturday, December 18, 2010

Porta Del Sol - Mound, MN

In a land rather barren of any significantly good eats lies Porta Del Sol. Cleverly placed in an area devoid of any Mexican restaurants, Porta Del Sol has been serving Mound for a couple years. Porta Del Sol offers in house dining with no frills. They also have a drive thru (which is a little confusing seeing as how they are not fast food) and will deliver for orders over $20. I've been to this restaurant several times, and am glad for a little taste of comfort in this mom and pop shop.

On my recent visit, I decided to try the Smothered Burrito (with chicken, a burrito topped with enchilada sauce and cheese - $8.99) and the jalapeno poppers ($2.49 for 3.) Let me point out that NOTHING is fried at Porta Del Sol, which is music to my ears. Don't get me wrong: I like fried food, but I appreciate the time and care taken due to the lack of fryers. Nothing sits under heat lamps or in dirty grease all day.

The platter comes with chips and pico. While the chips are the white flour variety (personal preference is for corn - no fault of Porta's whatsoever) and never warm like I hope for, they are good. I always ask for the hot pico, which is never really hot at all. But it is fresh and light, and has all the components that create a fine pico de gallo.

Jalapeno Poppers
I was a little curious about these, since they are baked. As a result, some of the crisp is lost. But it isn't soggy or totally soft, as the exterior does offer a slight bready crunch. They are good for what they are, but I do find myself longing for more cream cheese.

Smothered Burrito
Recently, I overheard someone at the neighboring Legion mention that Porta's refried beans taste like canned. While my personal taste is for black beans, I still think that's a harsh and ill-advised statement. The beans are fine, a step above canned, and the black beans are even better. The red rice is good, much better than what I could make at home. The Burrito was delicious. The enchilada sauce is lush, and gives a nice cumin kick. The fillings are pretty standard (beans, lettuce, cheese, meat) but as a whole, the burrito is very successful. My only complaint is that my dish came out kind of lukewarm, which confused me.

In addition to these, other favorites are the gordita (meat, beans, cheese, potatoes and peppers stuffed into a pita pocket like shell. See this), the flautas (literally smothered in melted cheese, basically a meat and cheese roll up inside small corn tortillas), the tamales, the chalupa (basically a double decker style taco. Don't let the taco bell terms confuse you!) and the enchiladas are all really good. I get the chimichurri sauce with everything. I compare it to McDonalds mac sauce, but mexican. It consists of mayo, chipotles, and ketchup, and is not your traditional green chimichurri. It is spicy, sweet and smoky all at once. I can't confess as to the authenticity of Porta Del Sol, and I don't really care. It tastes damn good and a welcome addition to the culinary wasteland I inhabit.

Porta Del Sol on Urbanspoon


  1. Thanks for the review. I live out in the area and was not even aware it was there. Will try it soon.

  2. It's not really close to you's down the street from me.

  3. NOT fried?!!?? I'm not sure I'll even attempt this place. But we'll see. You also said "chimichurri", which has been the word of the month on the Food Network". Ha Ha.

  4. Try it, they still have some tasty things!