eating indie in indy

Posts tagged “pickled onion

Madera Tex Mex BBQ & Tap 5711 E. 71st St.

Well we are back and at a new brisket joint. This location was G.T. South BBQ a few years back and then they closed rather abruptly. This place may very well fill their void quite nicely.

While chatting with our server Betsy I learned that they make their own tortillas. They do not offer a chips and salsa but they do sell a chips and queso for 7 bucks. One thing about their tortillas. They are flour torts not corn. They work well with the cheese sauce just expect them to be “flakey”. That is just the nature of a flour tortilla free floating in hot oil.

Pat didn’t want any bread so he opted for a half pound of pulled pork for $8. He was unable to get slaw because they put onion in theirs.

I had to have brisket since a good sliced brisket sandwich is still difficult to get around here. And I discovered that they have a good one for $10.

These guys may be new to town but they do a great job with their brisket. The smoke was subtle and the meat was tender and moist. The rub they used is unassuming so you can really taste the beef.

Since I currently have no difficulty eating onion I ordered a side of slaw for $3. I usually prefer my slaw to be sweet and creamy; like Grandma’s brand. The slaw that Madera puts up is lightly dressed with a slightly sweet and tangy effect. I really liked it. It had a great mouth feel and would work on top of a pulled pork sandwich very well.

Rarely do I make it back to a joint a second time. It is like that bear and mountain thing. However I have done it before and it looks like it is going to happen again. I am indeed planning on going back to Madera. Welcome to Indy.

Bakersfield on Mass. Ave.


Yeah…Tacos. To me tacos are the ultimate food carrier of the New World. Every culture has a carbohydrate cab designed to transfer various proteins from  Point A to Point B. Where Point B is your mouth. Be it leavened or unleavened. Call it naan, tortilla, pita, or lavash  it serves the same purpose. In this part of the country it is the tortilla. Flour or corn. Different load, same purpose. The flour tortilla is generally used for a burritos. Consider that the SUV of protein transport. The corn is typically used for a taco. Consider that more like a compact car. I love tacos but I was a little hesitant trying this particular joint. From the reviews it was a hip and trendy place on the most hip and trendy street in town. Massachusetts Avenue. From experience it is usually the hip and trendy places that try too hard on their food and pretty much fail. So I had to try this place because the menu was straight forward and provocative. I also made it a solo trip because Pat doesn’t like onions; and sometime onions are essential in a dish.

bakersfield 004

One semi quick remark regarding the name. It is called Bakersfield as an homage to a certain type of country music “developed” in Bakersfield California. I think this style is best represented by the song “Streets of Bakersfield” most famously recorded by Buck Owens and Dwight Yokam. I was rather taken aback upon entering. I was led to believe that the place would be overrun by hipsters, and the din of Johnny Cash would be overwhelming. Well. The place was loud; from business types talking. The music was very subdued. Sitting at the bar I ordered a $2 PBR. Much to my chagrin it came in a typical pint glass. Again, the reviews led me to believe that it would come in a Cowboy Boot Schooner. However the bartender told me they had all been stolen. Oh well. It was only 2 bucks. The tacos are $3 & $4 each. Which sounds reasonable. I knew going in that I would only eat 3 or 4 tacos. Hell I gotta’ watch my weight. On the first course I ordered a Mole and a Pastor. The first thing you notice is the size of the tortillas. They are small, more in the sub compact category. They are made in-house and are pretty tasty, but the size brings into question the value. Also both portions of meat could have used a lot more sauce, they were a little on the dry side. Also I really had trouble differentiating between the two dishes, after digging out a taste from under the copious quantity of toppings. Although the selections were apt. Fresh cilantro, pickled onions etc. too much can detract from the main ingredient.

bakersfield 007

The Pastor is top left, the one with the chopped pineapple. I wish I had thought to add an element for scale in order to demonstrate the size.

bakersfield 006

My last pick was the chicken braised in tomatillo sauce and topped with a guajillo chile salsa as well as the usual toppings. On the website this particular dish is called Pollo Verde. For some reason it was changed to Pollo Rojo and the quajillo salsa was added. Curious. It would appear as if the chicken is roasted in a tomatillo sauce and the resultant meat is shredded and then tossed with the chile sauce not just topped. It too was a little on the dry side and it was hard to detect any distinct taste. The change in recipe begs the question. Why even use tomatillos if you are going to hide their flavor with the quajillo?

bakersfield 008

Yeah I started eating before I took the shot. Like that’s the first time I did that. So in a nut shell their tacos are not bad they just need to be bold with the sauces. In my opinion the only way you could differentiate between the dishes is by the toppings. Step up with the flavors of the chiles. Be bold.  I think they did try too hard to be a true taqueria. They didn’t fail, they just didn’t totally succeed.However I can almost see this whole idea being franchised. Sort of like an “upscale” Qdoba; with alcohol. If that is the plan Good Luck. One thing is certain when you eat here you are getting the best taco on Mass. Ave.Bakersfield Mass Ave. on Urbanspoon