The Luchador tangles with El Gringo on Main St. in El Segundo. In an epic battle of almost Mexican vs almost Mexican, El Gringo does a great job of taming the masked man. Especially when it comes to the simple quesadilla.
Having spent a number of years in Mexico, the Luchador has had some pretty amazing Mexican dishes in his time. Outside of the US border towns, no city this side of the Rio Grande serves up authentic Mexican food than LA. And although there are plenty of gems hidden throughout LA, including some amazing food trucks, El Gringo isn’t one of them. Nor do they pretend to be.
What El Gringo does very well however, is serve up its own interpretation of Mexican food. If you understand that going in, you will be very happy by the time you eat and leave. We are not eating tacos al pastor in Colonial Condesa in Ciudad de Mexico here folks, but we are having is a damn good quesadilla on Main St. in El Segundo.
Heading in, you will be greeted by a very friendly staff who will make seating accommodations for whatever you like. They have both low tables by the large open window at the front, high-top tables a little further back and then booths in a separate section.
Once you are settled in you will be offered chips and salsa. Having been here a few times, sometimes the chips come out of the fryer piping hot. That is nice as opposed to getting something that has been sitting for a few days. The salsa runs on the spicy side, which I like, so make sure you order a beverage to start it all off.
The Fajita Quesadilla is what was ordered up. Decided to go with the steak. It also comes with bell peppers, onions and tomatoes. The plate comes with guac on the side. You can add sour cream for a small charge which I did.
The quesadilla was delicious. It had the perfect combinations of vegetables to add a bit of crunch. But the star of the dish, was the steak. It is perfectly seasoned and pops its head up just above all the other ingredients just enough to let you know it is there but not enough to overpower the dish.
The serving is a nice size. Many places will sell a quesadilla as an appetizer but here it is a full meal. The sour cream and the guac are the perfect ads. If you want even more of a crunch on the dish you can break up some of the tortilla chips and sprinkle them on top.
El Gringo has three other locations in the South Bay. Redondo Beach, Hermosa Beach and Manhattan Beach. In full disclosure the Luchador has eaten at a couple of them and they are all consistent as far as service and food.