Pico-Union: Getting Cuban at El Colmao
It’s been a bit since I’ve been to El Colmao, a Cuban restaurant in the Pico-Union district, just a bit outside of Downtown Los Angeles. I wanted to revisit since I’m on my quest for Cuban/Puerto Rican/ Dominican Republic food in LA.
El Colmao reminds me of coffee shops in Miami. I bet this place was pretty glam when it opened and still has a bit of faded glory to it now.
It’s almost a given you’ll order the avocado salad you can dress yourself with vinegar and oil on the table.
We were going for a pork-centric night. A friend ordered a dish she loved in Miami called Masas de puerco fritas a lo macho. It was a particularly meaty looking dish but tended towards the dry side.
Another friend opted for a childhood favorite, boliche mechado. The sauce reminded me of the tomato sauce that’s packed with sardines. I would skip this dish.
But what was awesome? The plantains and potato balls. I could go for these again and again.
My plate of pierna de puerco frita (fried pork) was just chunks of pork but once I dressed it up with some rice, beans and onions, it became a magnificent plate. The pork was tender, flavorful and juicy. This was the best dish of the three pork dishes we tried.
We didn’t have room for dessert but I’m still unsure about the Philly cream cheese coconut concoction.
El Colmao2328 W Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90006 — (213) 386-6131 © The Minty 2015