Meal Cost (for 2): $23.94. Health Rating A. Yelp 3 stars
This is the large Cardenas Market where Price Club used to be years ago at Rio Rancho Road and Garey. The building was split and part of it is the Rio Rancho Mall (see previous posting). Inside the store is a full-service bakery and other amenities, but I was honing in on the food service area at the far southeast corner of the store. Here you can order a wide variety of to go or eat-in Mexican food.
Because it's Spring Break for the Lovely Mrs. C, she accompanied me this week, so I can report on more than just what I ate. After perusing the menu boards, Mrs. C asked the well-dressed (shirt and tie) young man ahead of us if he had any suggestions. He suggested the grilled chicken, stating that it was a lot better than the usual rotisserie chicken at a grocery store.
We then looked at the large selection of Aguas Frescas. The young woman at the counter was very friendly and offered us a taste of the Jamica, which we found out is Hibiscus. We liked it so we both ordered a large.
For our lunch, Mrs. C ordered the Carnitas plate (carnitas, rice, beans, salad, and a large roasted pepper, and corn tortillas). I opted for the Chili Rellenos plate (egg battered chili stuffed with cheese, rice, beans, salade, and a large roasted pepperand corn tortillas). While these were good choices, I think I'll want to go back and try some of the caldas (soups, which looked fabulous), the chicken, and perhaps the burritos or tortas. All looked really good as various customers ordered and come into the seating area, which has about a dozen tables set for 4.
The self-described gringa, the Lovely Mrs. C wasn't interested in the pepper, so I took it, but while it had a little char, it was not actually softened, so was quite spicy and I ended up only eating my own. The rice was excellent and didn't require a trip to the salsa/condiment bar (where there was salsa, onion, cilantro, etc.). The beans had a nice texture and where quite flavorful. The Chili Relleno was very good with a nice coating, and the cheese had a bit of a salty flavor which complemented the rest of the dish very nicely. I got at taste of Mrs. C's carnitas and they were both moist and flavorful. A great meal. Again, I definitely will be back to try more things. They also have lengua (tongue) and buche (beef head), as well as other interesting ingredients.