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Old 12-01-2009, 04:02 PM
 
Location: Texas
321 posts, read 720,569 times
Reputation: 201

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You're not going to find any true mexican restaurants in Springfield no matter what anyone tells you. They all have their Missouri twists to them. Mexican Villa has to be the worst of the Missouri-Mex, as I call them. Nothing against anyone who likes it, just personal preference. The closest thing to something descent beside what's been mentioned is Ceilito Lindo's or La Hacienda. Other than that, get use to the Missouri-Mex.
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Old 12-03-2009, 10:11 AM
 
Location: Springfield, MO
77 posts, read 258,565 times
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I like La Hacienda, but then again, I like Mexican Villa. Maybe it depends on which Mexican Villa you ate at...?
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:11 PM
 
44 posts, read 130,349 times
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IMO a Mexican restaurant should at least serve fresh horchata and chorizo. El Charro didn't have horchata.
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Old 12-07-2009, 02:14 PM
 
22 posts, read 34,502 times
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I like Los Portales on Sunshine. We also just tried Amigos on Campbell last week, and I thought it was good, too. There's nothing wrong with the Villa, as long as you're not really expecting Mexican food. I kinda like the term "Missouri Mex"...
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Old 12-07-2009, 02:52 PM
 
Location: Southwest Missouri
1,921 posts, read 5,552,594 times
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I enjoy a meal at El Puente in Nixa every once in a while. I'm not a huge fan of Mexican food and don't know if El Puente qualifies as "authentic" or not, but it tastes good and that's all I care about. My pick is the King Burrito. Yum.
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Old 12-08-2009, 06:05 AM
 
Location: At home.
12,230 posts, read 1,648,442 times
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My two cents...I wouldn't drive to Cabool for El Imperial...it is a notch above Taco Bell in my opinion. And they are stingy with their tortilla chips---one basket and that's it! Don't waste your time.
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Old 12-08-2009, 07:51 AM
 
Location: New Orleans, LA
1,655 posts, read 2,977,797 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by heaton View Post
Just moved here from AZ. The only thing I'm missing (besides a job) is good mexican food. Need help finding a mexican place in or around Springfield, MO. The first place we tryed was Mexican Villa.....THAT WAS BAD, really bad.
The last time we were in Springfield, we ate at the Mexican Villa on S. Campbell. We are not fans, either. On the positive side, the staff was really nice and attentive and it wasn't crowded. Also, we thought it was very inexpensive. But none of that helped the food which was the problem. I realize from other posts on this thread that Mexican Villa may be an acquired taste - - however, despite the low prices and friendly staff, neither of us is interested in ever eating there again.

Next time we visit Springfield, maybe we will try La Hacienda.
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Old 12-08-2009, 03:46 PM
 
44 posts, read 130,349 times
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Thumbs up for The Tamale King

Tamales are thick and worth the $1.75. Sopes and tortas are offered as well.
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Old 12-08-2009, 05:37 PM
 
794 posts, read 1,492,322 times
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A word or two in defense of local Mexican eateries:

First, there is no such thing as "Mexican Food". There are a variety of styles of cooking in Mexico, and at the extremes the differences are so great as to have scarcely anything in common. Someone who has acquired a taste for Mexican at a particular restaurant or from a particular community may encounter an entirely different style at another restaurant and deride it as inauthentic. Think of the difference between New England and Maryland clam chowder. Or Alabama fried chicken and New Orleans fried chicken. Which is authentic? Both, of course.

Then there is the problem of ingredients. It is only recently that many ingredients used in Mexico have become available here at any price. And that is only canned, dried, or frozen items. Very few ingredients used in Mexico that need to be fresh are available here in anything like the optimal condition. So everybody adapts their cooking to what is available.

Finally there is the problem of continuity. Mexican Villa was opened by a man and his wife whose knowledge of "Mexican" food was what they had eaten down in Texas when he was in the military. They came back here and attempted to recreate what they remembered using what ingredients were available in Springfield, Mo., in the late 50s. People have gotten used to what they have; are they supposed to change their recipies now? To a certain extent this is true of places like Ceilito Lindo: it is entirely possible that their menu would be different if they opened today rather than 10 years ago (just speculating, of course).

Now, off to Peking House for some truly authentic Springfield Cashew Chicken.
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Old 12-08-2009, 06:11 PM
 
Location: The City of St. Louis
938 posts, read 3,054,939 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by graytabbie View Post
My two cents...I wouldn't drive to Cabool for El Imperial...it is a notch above Taco Bell in my opinion. And they are stingy with their tortilla chips---one basket and that's it! Don't waste your time.
Agreed. El Imperial is a decent enough restaurant for Cabool, but certainly not worth the drive from Springfield.

Most Mexican food found in America is really Tex-Mex that has been influenced by the tastes in the respective areas where it is being made. Nachos and chimichangas...though delicious...are Mexican-inspired American inventions. One huge difference I've found in most Missouri Mexican food compared to true Tex-Mex/Mex in places like Arizona and Texas is how spicy the salsa and entrees in general are. The food may be pretty good, but the hotness level dies off the further north you go. IMO, the best Mexican food I've eaten in Missouri is at any of the El Charro chains or Los Cazadores in Rolla...not all that hot, but quite good. I lived in Texas for a couple of years and still like both places, and my family members I took there from Texas also thought it was quite good. Better than anything I've found here in St. Louis so far. Also, if you think Mexican food in Missouri is bad, try it on the East Coast...yuck.

FWIW, I remember going to the Mexican Villa on Campbell sometime in the mid-90's and thinking it was not very good.
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