You know how it is when you go out to eat sometimes — the food is good, but it’s expensive. Or the food is good, but the service is poor. Or the food is cheap, but you’d be better off with a frozen pizza.
Viva La Bamba hits all three points that I consider important — tasty food is brought to your table quickly without much damage to your wallet. The restaurant is located on Grand Avenue within shouting distance of the bridge construction, so if you’re coming in from the west, you’ll have to make a detour. The fast service will make up for the extra time.
My husband and I met at La Bamba recently for an after-work supper. We had a basket of warm tortilla chips with bean dip and salsa before we got completely seated. The bean dip was chunky and tasty, and the salsa tasted garden fresh.
I’m no stranger to this Mexican restaurant since it’s within walking distance from my office — very convenient for lunch. But I’ve never been there in the evening and was eager to try something besides the lunch specials.
I decided to try something different and ordered the chipotle burrito. Kelly ordered the chicken chimichanga. We didn’t have long to wait before the hot plates of food arrived at the table.
Kelly’s meal included rice, beans, pico de gallo and guacamole. The rice was moist and had plenty of vegetables mixed in. The pico de gallo was mild, which suited Kelly just fine.
“It’s nice to be able to eat this without burning your gizzard,” he remarked. He was also pleased with the quality of the chicken in the chimichanga.
“It’s very flavorful,” he said of the shredded dark meat. “A lot of times you lose the flavor of the chicken altogether.”
My burrito was stuffed with seasoned pork and chipotle peppers. It had a touch of sweetness, a touch of smokiness and a touch of heat for a pleasing flavor combination.
Our meals, plus a soda, cost less than $25. Good price, good food.Viva La Bamba
6101 Grand Ave.
Hours: Sunday: 1 – 8:30 p.m.
Mon. – Thur.: 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Friday: 11 a.m. – 10:30 p.m.
Saturday: 7 a.m. – 10:30 p.m.