There are (at least) two businesses in Fort Worth with the name “Los Paisanos.” One rents charter buses at I-35 and East Seminary Drive. The other is a restaurant and taqueria in the old Los Alamos space near the Rose Marine Theater on North Main Street on the North Side. If you’re looking for great Mex-Mex food, make sure you hit the North Main location. A recent weekday afternoon visit revealed friendly, casual service and a surprisingly large crowd chowing down.
The taqueria is already famous for its $1 tacos, and they’re indeed a great deal. Your choice of beef, chicken, slow-roasted pork, or lengua (cow tongue) is served street-style: Largely unseasoned, the steaming meat is loaded onto corn or soft flour tortillas, topped with pungent sprigs of fresh cilantro, and accompanied by a tender roasted whole jalapeño and some fiery salsa verde made from tomatillos. The corn tortillas — thin, chewy, and exuding a great, earthy maize aroma — are made in-house. Three bucks plus change will get you three awesome tacos that provide more than a full lunch.
The guiso al tomatillo verde (pork stew in green tomatillo sauce) featured big pieces of tender sautéed pig mixed with a pulpy, slightly seedy sauce made of tomatillos so ripe and fresh that the stuff had a wonderful fruity undertone to it. The plentiful chile spices also made it as hot as an August day in Laredo. The guiso rojo (beef stew in red sauce) was also terrific. The large chunks of cow were juicy but not fatty and prepared with a thick, rich, chile-fired dark red sauce that, while not as hot as the green stuff, had a very nice roasted flavor to it. As with most of the meals at Los Paisanos, both stews were served with generous portions of smooth, almost creamy refried beans and golden Mexican rice that was nicely sticky.
You might expect the mojarra frita, or fried tilapia, to be a breaded and deep-fried white filet. Instead, what arrives on your plate is the whole un-breaded fish, with head and eyeballs intact, so folks who don’t like their food staring at them should take note. With the thick, scaly top skin pulled aside, the meat was choice — tender, flaky, utterly fresh — but, of course, loaded with needle-like bones that made the meal a slightly harrowing experience. The fried tilapia was served with refried beans and, instead of rice, large fries that were hot, slightly oily, and a marvelous accompaniment to the fish flesh.
Desayuno (breakfast) is served all day and consists of scrambled or sunny-side- up eggs mixed with various meats and vegetables. The huevos con chorizo was a fluffy, satiny mound of yellowish scrambled eggs mixed with small, tender pieces of Mexican pork sausage whose seasonings weren’t so much hot as curry-like in their intricate spiciness. No burnt edges or runniness in these huevos, just a hearty, seamless blend of egg and sausage.
Los Paisanos doesn’t bother with fancy on its menu. The entrées err on the side of simple, traditional, and very tasty.
Los Paisanos, 1446 N Main St, FW.
817-625-TACO. 8am-10pm Sun-Thu,
Taco …………………………… $1.00
Huevos con chorizo …….. $5.99
Guiso rojo …………………… $7.99
Guiso al tomatillo verde …. $7.99
Mojarra frita ………………… $8.99