One of the attractions of the weekly farmer’s market in City Hall Plaza is the proliferation of tiny eateries, the satellites of popular, permanent restaurants, that are wedged in between the veggies and the fruit stands. Such is the case with Xochimilco, which is familiar to diners at its main restaurant on Auburn Boulevard.
The home restaurant is on Auburn Boulevard at College Oak, but on Wednesdays, Xochimilco (that’s pronounced “So-chee-mil-koh”) packs up and heads downtown to the market square. By late morning, as they crank up their fires and get the basics going, the aroma of Mexican food drifts over the plaza.
There are tacos, burritos and enchiladas, of course, made of your choice of beef, beans and chicken, and tasty refried beans, plus carnitas and tangy salsa. The lunch specials, the core of Xochimilco’s downtown offerings, include a single taco, enchilada, chile relleno, tamale, tostada, burrito or quesadilla, served with beans, Spanish rice and assorted spices for about $6.
Xochimilco also has tortas (Mexican-style sandwiches), chicken soup and even something called a “super burrito” that must weigh three pounds and is stuffed with meat, rice, peppers and herbs. It’s enough to feed two, easily.
Xochimilco’s downtown menu is more modest than the full-blown offerings at the main restaurant, but if you like the downtown fare, you’ll really like the main eatery. There, you can find a huge bowl of seafood soup for $15.95, a lavish display of shrimp fajitas for $22.50 and full-serving chimichangas for $11.95. Xochimilco hopes that if you like the farmer’s market eats, you’ll check out the main restaurant. It usually works, too.
There’s also the conventional array of carne asada, carnitas, steak and al pastor dishes for about $11, plus a few surprises, such as flour flautas topped with sour cream and guacamole for $10.25, and grilled shrimp tacos for $11.95.
If you’re really hungry – and I mean really hungry – try the combinations, which all run about $12. There’s the Xochimilco Special of a taco, an enchilada, a chile relleno and steak ranchero for $12.75, and the No. 4 combination, which includes a quesadilla, a chile relleno, a tamale, chile Colorado and steak ranchero. Both, of course, include beans, rice, some salad and tortillas.
Wednesday, City Hall Plaza,
11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
4904 Auburn Boulevard
Auburn at College Oak
Lunch served Mon-Fri: Noon – 3 p.m.
Mon-Fri:11 a.m. – 9 p.m.