By Tara Redfield
The Queen of Love Happy Hour, Maren, and I did a photo shoot at El Toro Cantina on Wilshire a few weeks ago and ever since I have been trying to get back. This time I wanted to actually eat and drink, not just sit and look pretty. Neither of us had been, but we were quite impressed with the lively "south of the border" atmosphere. We also liked the indoor or outdoor seating option. We saw menus that confirmed they had Happy Hour, as well as Taco Tuesday. We would meet again, it was just a matter of when.
I decided when, a free Tuesday night in May! I'm going to write something you've never read...my guest for this spicy happy hour adventure was a blue eyed gentleman by the name of Paul. Yes! I actually brought a guy with me on a happy hour adventure for once. Not just any guy mind you. Paul and I go back to 8th Grade. He was my high school sweetheart and now we both live in LA and are best friends. True story.
Paul and I are both huge Mexican food fans so I thought this would be the perfect Happy Hour for us. We only live five minutes apart so I picked him up with some Lady Gaga and Ke$ha blowin' up my speakers...'cause that's how I roll. The fiesta was on.
Hola, El Toro Cantina! The bar was packed! Basketball games were on all the screens, people were living it up! We sat at the outside bar on stools facing Wilshire. The early evening sun was still warm. People watching with $1.00 tacos and $4.00 Margaritas? This could be one of my versions of heaven!
I ordered my Margarita on the rocks with extra salt on the rim. Paul started with a vodka soda, then obviously joined me in the Margarita celebration. Since there were four different tacos at a buck a piece we ordered one of each to get started. We would order more of our favorites, once we decided which ones they were. The four tacos were: grilled vegetable, crispy potato, pollo asado, and braised beef.
My goodness, my Margarita was huge. It really was, no matter how many sips I took it was not disappearing. It was like a weird magic trick! The never ending Margarita! Something tells me that if I hadn't volunteered myself to drive, it would have been gone a lot sooner, but that's just a theory.
My favorite tacos were the braised beef and the potato. I could have predicted that before tasting them, but you never know, sometimes a grilled vegetable taco will surprise you. That hasn't happened to me yet, but, someday it might...just not at El Toro apparently. Another round of beef and potato tacos were ordered and not a bite was left behind.
Even after all of those tacos, chips and salsa, and a side order of refried beans my Margarita still looked about half full. I gave up. If going to Happy Hours on a weekly basis has taught me anything, it's that if a glass is abnormally big and full of alcohol, and you are a petite person, you do not have to finish it. Living and learning in action.Thank goodness for friends like Paul who don't let my unfinished booze go to waste!
The next time you're looking for a Happy Hour/Taco Tuesday combo, give El Toro Cantina a try. I have proven that it's good for photo shoots and Margaritas! Viva La Hora Feliz!
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