Sometimes, you come across a family operation, and the food just speaks for itself. El Farolito has some great home comfort Mexican food. It is authentic as can be, and in the Orange County? No kidding. This is my favorite Mexican restaurant in all of Orange County, so far. Their food is simple, and really delicious. It is going to take a lot to take this off the top of my list.
Every Mexican restaurant gives you those sought after tortilla chips. Whether they are bottomless bowls or just one platter, eating Mexican food without the complimentary chips and salsa just isn’t right. The one very minor thing I don’t like here is the salsa. It is a bit mushy, and doesn’t taste fresh. I like mine heavy with cilantro and chopped onions. Their tortilla chips are crispy. When I say crispy, I mean some people might not like it crispy — your teeth will hurt after, crispy. That’s not a good thing or bad thing. If you want to try some of the crunchiest tortilla chips ever, come to El Farolito.
My favorite thing to get here is the carnitas. It is amazing how juicy and flavorful their carnitas is. Most carnitas I eat anywhere is usually dry or flavorless, kind of like cardboard. Theirs is so tender and flavorful, it is amazing. There is a nice crispy crust on the outside. The caramelization of the meat really is where all the flavor comes from. It is amazing with the rice and beans. It is such a simple dish, and I am a huge fan.
Their enchilada plate was amazing as well. The tortilla was so soft and tasty, and the cheese on top was great. You know how much I love cheese. Their enchilada sauce was very memorable as well. It had a nice rich flavor and the meet inside was amazing. It was a traditional dish and their portions were over flowing. I always take leftovers home.
One wouldn’t expect such an authentic restaurant in Orange County. I have been all around some popular and authentic Mexican restaurants in Los Angeles, but this Orange County hole in the wall really surprised me. Honestly, it is as authentic as El Tepayac in Boyle Heights. The flavors aren’t watered down or changed. It is as authentic as can be. It is what it is, and it is goooood.