Every so often, Denver on a Spit & I, along with our adorable significant others, meet up to chow down & chew the fat. Since we last met at Red Tango & Silla, Mr. & Mr. Spit have been rather preoccupied by the arrival of twins, but we finally got the chance to reunite & meet the equally adorable tots over a mellow lunch at Jaliscan newcomer El Olvido. What follows is his take on the experience; for my take, click here.
Set the scene—what’d you think of the atmosphere?
I would think referring to anything going on in El Olvido that lonely Saturday afternoon an “atmosphere” would be stretching it, but if I had to describe it in a word, it would unfortunately have to be “desolate.” That being said, the lone server/host was incredibly friendly & helpful, and I was glad to see a couple kids running around as we decided to bring our boys.
That being said, we were there in the middle of a day on a Saturday at a place named after a famous mariachi song about drowning one’s sorrows in tequila & listening to mariachi. Maybe we should go back when the sun is setting & open up a bottle of tequila on the patio. Maybe they even have Mariachis. They should.
Drinking has a way of enhancing the ambiance for sure. Can you explain the difference between what you were drinking & what I was drinking?
Michelada is beer served with a concentrated, fresh-squeezed lime juice. Your Michelada roja also has things like Clamato, a clam-based tomato drink (and the only tomato drink with its own reaggeton song). Sometimes there are even oysters floating in them. [Hot damn!—Denveater] I am a beer lover who is not afraid to admit that I love my beer with ice, juice or clams. It is most refreshing while swinging on a hammock under the hot sun & listening to waves lap on the shore of a white-sand beach, but it’s also good for an early summer brunch on South Broadway, I suppose. Another bonus is that they have a couple Mexican lagers on tap—Dos Equis & Dos Equis Amber on that day.
Tell me about your huge salad. In particular, how was the dressing?
I love that they have a Caesar salad on the menu. I always find it funny that so many Italian restaurants have this salad on the menu, effectively laying claim to a Mexican invention. It was actually very good, rather eggy, & its enormity was a nice prep for my huge plate of carne en su jugo.
And what was your take on that?
Carne en su jugo? All dishes should have such great, simple & descriptive names: meat in its juice.
I have to admit that I don’t have much experience with this dish. It is a traditional dish of Jalisco (sticking with the tequila & mariachi theme), although in my native Chicago there are so many Tapatíos that it is pretty commonplace there. In Denver, El Olvido is the only place I know that serves it. Again, I don’t have a gold standard to compare it to, but I wished for something a little richer and thicker. That being said, after a sprinkle of salt I absolutely devoured my large order without a problem.
Likewise. What about your fair lady’s tacos?
Fish tacos of battered & deep-fried red snapper. It was an interesting, fusion-type plate, topped with ranch dressing of all things. They were actually quite good.
Overall, what’d you like/dislike about the place?
I liked the carne en su jugo, & I appreciate what the chef is trying to do here: focus on a few specialties & not worry about the menu-for-the-masses. There are no enchilada-burrito-chile-relleno combo platters here. I didn’t dislike anything, although the interior is a little drab. The unfortunate part is that the lack of patrons does not bode well for the staying power of El Olvido. Hopefully they will make it.