Hopefully this review comes out right: La Perla isn't the sort of place that pokes its nose so high in the air it trips over its feet, with linen tablecloths, choice of napkin colors or even glass drinking glasses. Could you impress your date with a meal here? Well, that depends on your date, now doesn't it? I'd be impressed. And I hope that's how my review comes across to readers.
Don't be put off by the fact that you walk through what looks like a mercado to get to the diner--in fairness, that's exactly what one-half the business is, or rather a convenience store with a good selection of brands and styles that can't be found in the gringo stores elsewhere in the community. In the back is a sleeper of a greasy spoon diner...that serves flautas, burritos and tamales of the sort that I last had in the sort of restaurant in Mexico that caters to the locals.
Under what circumstances would I come here? When I want authentic ethnic cuisine, affordable and quick.
I've been here several times in the spring and summer of 2013, at various times of day and various days of the week. I would not hesitate to come again. Though no venue of haute cuisine or obsequiously fawning service, the food is plentiful and the price is low. They do take-away, but have table service of the sort that leaves me feeling like I've been served by my Mom--she'll bring the food to the table since that's what you expect but she's not going to linger and wax rhapsodic over the plat du jour. She's just going to plop the plate on the table and leave you strictly alone. And in fairness, that's what I want sometimes. Just leave me alone to eat my lunch and read my book.
A word of warning, more or less: It's incredibly busy for lunch; this is clearly the place to go for all the working schmucks who have a limited budget and an even more limited lunch 'hour'. If you can, either arrive before noon or after one pm.
And if you're going straight home afterwards, stop at the meat counter. They've got a full service meat counter with parts of the beast that never show up at the gringo markets.
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