It’s been a hectic couple weeks and I’m afraid blogging isn’t on the top “To Do” list at the moment. Scott and I move to Charlotte in a few weeks (exact date still TBD) and it’s a wild ride. We’re a little too accustomed to this whole moving business.
As excited as we are to return to “God’s Country” (as Scott’s dad aptly called it recently; I know it as “The Bible Barbecue Belt”), it’s a little bittersweet to say goodbye to a few things we’ve grown to love about this often frustrating yet diverse and tasty Mid-Atlantic area.
On our Farewell Tour, the first stop this week was Tres Reyes, our local taqueria down on Kenilworth Avenue.
We prepped our appetite with beers. Our good neighbor friend Jim joined us for a brief tasting at the new beer and wine market across the street from our apartment. We tried a Crispin Cider, Ephemere white ale, and a Small Batch 471 Breckenridge IPA. Of course an awesomely stocked shop would open weeks before we head out of this wackadoo little area.
Beer segued into tacos, and we made our way over to Tres Reyes. Scott and I are always the sole gringo patrons when we visit, but that’s the deal when you live in a county that is 17 percent white. Scott’s Spanish skills are sharp, so he gets a knowing smile from the cashier when he orders. Me, I’m the blanca who starts strong-ish, asking for “Torta Mexicana” and quickly degrading into “And a Sprite, please.”
On Thursday evening, we enjoyed a Torta with Carne Asada (sandwich with tomato, black beans, avocado and a nice white cheese), and Scott’s Lingua, Carne Asada and Pollo tacos. Jim ordered an Horchata, a delicious rice milk beverage mixed with cinnamon, and a similar trio of tacos. He’s enthusiastic about those tacos.
I love Tres Reyes’ food because it’s not the standard rice-beans-cheese plate kind of establishment (though there ain’t nothin’ wrong with chowing down on that, believe you me. Hello, last weekend’s Papas & Beer extravaganza in Asheville.)
The tacos are simply garnished with raw radish slices and grilled green onions. The flavor lies in the preparation of the meats — the tender chicken, the beef grilled to crispy/caramelized perfection — and the chopped cilantro and onion are the only toppings - no cheese. Very basic, but the sabor is in full effect. There I go again…
TR doesn’t serve alcohol; you’ll usually see families and groups of young guys eating together. It’s a genuine and affordable spot that Scott and I have enjoyed so much in our time here. Jim says he thinks we’ll definitely find a spot like it in Charlotte — I sure hope he’s right, but if not I hope we can come back sometime for a taco or three.
Next up: our ‘hood dive bar. To be continued…