I once traipsed across theYucatanwhen it was mostly dense jungle andCancunwas barely born. A long bus ride took us toMerida, no longer in the Caribbean but rather theGulf of Mexico. There in the middle of this jungle was a great old hotel. We’d stopped for lunch and I was immediately looking for Bogart and Bacall. I knew I could move to this hotel and live cheaper than I could back in the states. I contemplated moving there to write a novel but didn’t have the courage. This experience wasn’t felt again until I went to Hacienda Casa Blanca for Fine Mexican Dining and was immediately transported back to my jungle hotel.
Located at700 N. Johnson AveinEl Cajon, the Hacienda waits to give you a ride to a different experience. BazaarDelMundo comes to mind when looking at this establishment. Bright colors draw your energy up and out for great anticipation of nothing short of good tropical food, served with friendship and a desire to want you back for your next dining experience.
It is cloistered away in a humble looking strip mall west of ParkwayPlaza, so it’s easy to not see it at all. Once you park in their lot and approach the front door, you’ll see a nice patio with the hint of the colors inside and the flora of a jungle ushering you inside.
We made our way up a set of stairs and waited to be seated. On this Saturday, they offered a brunch distributed around an inside terrarium, with colorful blankets draped 10 feet above the diners. All the food on the buffet line looked inviting, but if I do a buffet, it’ll be Sunday because they include the champagne with that brunch.
We ordered off the menu. I took the cheese enchilada, beef taco combo whileNancytook the rolled taco combo. Mine was good. The beans were served in a tortilla bowl and the texture and flavor was very good. The rice was exceptionally tasty. I liked the scallions mixed in with a nice spice I couldn’t place but it was maybe the best rice side I’ve had. My enchilada was good and the taco was pretty standard fare for beef taco in a hard shell corn tortilla. Nancydidn’t think she’d do the taquitos next time, but they appeared much like my taco.
I will file this report under bakery but could file it under sports bar because they do a pretty good job offering a nice bar with loads of TVs in the next room. I’m thinking next Sunday, maybe champagne and Chargers at Hacienda Casa Blanca?