The incredibly intense and complex rating system…

Actually its stupid easy mostly because I’m beat from moving a truck load of lumber earlier on this beautiful spring Sunday and making up for it with a couple Mint Julep’s before dinner while watching my dogs play. Speaking of dogs, the lumber is for a fence that has been badly needed as our 2 dogs occasionally go on walkabouts when no one is looking. Typically they go a few houses down to our neighbors that throw EVERYTHING into their compost heap including chicken parts and other stuff that has no business being there. Our hound/shepherd mix rolls in it and our Weim eats it, thus the fence.

Anyway back to business, the rating system. Instead of going with stars or food bits we’re going with Shaka’s. Thats right Shaka’s, five of them. Most everyone knows them as the Hang loose symbol. I’m using them cause I always seem to go back about 10 years eating taco’s on the beach after a killer surf session with my buds.

One Shaka is bad say like sub-Del Taco, like some gringo overcooking ground beef  in a pan filled with some generic taco seasoning bad. Five is the cat’s ass. I really can only think about 2 places so far that would get Five’s and both are Socal joints. One is a small chain throughout Irvine and Tustin area in south Orange County called Jalapeno’s. Everything on the menu is pure unadulterated Mexican lust, you literally cant go wrong with any item. Their salsa bar while small has some of the best Escabeche (pickled carrots and jalapeños) around. The other is out in Cathedral City, just outside Palm Springs known as the infamous El Gallito…aka the rooster. Their hard shell shredded beef tacos are pretty much taco heaven. Freshly fried shells, fresh ingredients, slowly stewed shredded beef that had to be marinated in cocaine and a great hole-in-the-wall atmosphere. I still have the tattered t-shirt from 12 years ago. We used to stop by there on the way out to Parker, Arizona for our Quail hunts in the fall and spring. I can still remember the smell everything even in the car ride out to the desert.

So thats it, a simple 1-5 shaka rating system and tomorrow my first restaurant review, Mama’s Taqueria in Alpharetta. Until then Hang Loose


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