Here is how much The Monster knows about El Salvador: It’s in Central America. San Salvador is the capital. And…that about covers it. Which brings The Monster to Gloria’s. A Salvadoran and Mexican restaurant on Venice Boulevard in Culver City. Perusing the menu and it’s fairly standard Mexican restaurant fare with a few twists. Perhaps Salvadorans eat much the same cuisine as Mexicans. That would be useless bit of El Salvador knowledge #3.
Here’s the skinny: The service is exceedingly friendly. The kind where you walk in and are treated like a regular. The Monster loves that. Lots of smiles. Lots of conversation. People who take pride in their restaurant. The décor is ugly Mexican restaurant. Which means kitsch and fun. The prices are reasonable. There is a parking lot. There is a bar that beckons for a night The Monster won’t remember. Lots of reasons to frequent Gloria’s.
The chips and salsa (spicy) are nice and frequently replenished. The guacamole, while fresh, is pretty average and small for the price. It proves the sole letdown of the meal.
The Monster decides to give the pollo ranchero and the chicken enchiladas a whirl. Having been to Gloria’s a few times there is anticipation of a delicious feast.
The food comes out hot and quick. And a feast it is. Mounds of beans and rice and plantains and glorious chicken in a piquant yet sweet sauce. Mouthwatering enchiladas in a similarly fantastic sauce. This is the type of food you swirl together and devour like you would as a child. Large portions that could easily be passed around a table to sample more dishes.
Here’s a few random facts about El Salvador that have nothing to do with Gloria’s that Wikipedia is nice enough to share as The Monster does a little research: DJ Keoki is from El Salvador. Christy Turlington is of Salvadoran ancestry. There is a week long holiday and festival dedicated to the pupusa (thick, handmade corn tortillas filled with various accompaniments like soft cheese and ground meats). The dollar is the official currency of the country.
The Monster doesn’t make it to Gloria’s enough but after his last meal there will definitely make an effort to frequent it more often.
Why go? The last picture is The Monster’s companion after a meal at Gloria’s!
Monster rating: 4/5 Monsters