Walter Mencken 11 a.m., May 24
Thanksgiving: Setting Up Pavo Day
Hey, Thanksgiving's two days away! So what about those of us who can't be cooking a giant turkey?
Well for starters, one place will be open. Valentine's downtown (842 Market Street, between Eighth and Ninth, 619-234-8256).
It's been open nearly 30 years, and now that Market Street's getting more and more urban cool, Valentine's has become a cool place for the hip crowd to hang out and get their Mexican fix. It's danged reasonable, too.
I popped in for breakfast, behind these three slim ladies, Diane, Leah, and Theresa.
Leah, Theresa and Diane, wolfing it down but staying slim
What's their secret? Because they're diving full-throttle into their Mexican breakfast here at Valentine's.
Theresa tackles taquitos, Diane Vs. the tostada
"We only come here once a week," said Diane when I first meet her at the counter. "The three of us together." But she's fearless, eating the roasted chiles from the giveaway plate at the counter.
The sliced peppers
I have to follow, and hey, they're tasty and not too hot.
She has just ordered the tostada ($3.25) from Sr. Valentine, the man himself. Her girlfriends order taquitos, actually rolled tacos (4.50).
Me, I order an American breakfast ($5.95).
It's basically two potato patties, two over-easy eggs, and a few rashers of bacon. I get a horchata (rice drink, $2) and check out all the beautiful Mexican tiles on the countertop while I wait for my order.
Huh. Each has it's own story.
Glad to see this place get its due, because it hung in here during all the bad old days.
Sr. Valentine himself is serving this morning.
Sr. Valentine with my breakfast
I ask if he'll have turkey, come Thanksgiving. "Maybe, maybe not," he says. But his English isn't that good, and I'm not sure he understood. I'm betting they will. After all, turkeys -- pavos -- are just as Mexican as they are American.
Anyway, good to know Downtown isn't going to be totally closed down, come Thursday.
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