Hi, Zenster! ::waving::
I know the guys you mentioned above are the experts in the City, but I couldn’t help but go through the listings in my “Zagat” guide and reproduce a few here for your reading pleasure. Mind you, I haven’t eaten at any of these places, but I have always found the Zagat guide to be extremely accurate. The first two are in the SoMa area, and the second two are in the Mission area. I’ve always heard that the Mission area is the place to go in the City for Mexican food. Is this accurate, oldscratch? Here they are:
Wa-Ha-Ka, 1489 Folsom St. (at 11th St.)
“Cheap food”, “cheap beers” and cheap atmosphere are the draws at this pair of fast-food outlets in SoMa and Cow Hollow; although they praise the “fresh ingredients” in the “funky” fare (prawn burritos, crab-cake enchiladas), most Tex-Mex mavens see the joints mainly as “great places to start out the night” before hitting the clubs.
303 Second St. (bet. Folsom & Harrison Sts.)
Set in a “pretty”, earth-toned room with traditional decor (Mayan masks) as well as more predictably “posh” elements, this SoMa Mexican “doesn’t serve burritos”, but does offer “lovely presentations” of “stupendous haute” dishes whose flavors “aren’t buried in heavy cheese and sour cream”; budget-watchers resent the “high prices”, but that sure doesn’t stop the dot-commers.
La Cumbre Taqueria, 515 Valencia St. (bet. 16th & 17th Sts.)
This “fun, cheap” taqueria is a “Mission favorite” for “great quesadillas”, carnitas burritos big enough to feed two and a pollo asada that’s rumored to be based on “God’s recipe”; sorry, at “these prices you don’t get decor too.”
Pancho Villa Taqueria, 3071 16th St. (bet. Mission & Valencia Sts.)
“This is the Mission, these are the burritos, end of story” summarize aficionados of this “clean, bright restaurant” that offers great “value prices” and, many say, the “best Mexican food in the city”; unfortunately, “its popularity means unbearably long lines”, but a doorman keeps the “street parade” in order, and they serve until midnight.