Chile relleno

If you find yourself driving down Clayton Rd, about half-way between downtown Concord and the Clayton border you will pass the Taqueria Los Gallos Express #4, one of the seeming dozens of Mexican restaurants along that 6 mile stretch of strip malls and condominiums.

Los Gallos Express is part of a small local chain (4 stores).  While I don’t say that its has the best Mexican food to be found in Concord, I still often stop there if I’m in the neighborhood at lunch or dinner time, as I was a few days ago.

To digress a bit (and not to whine) – many, if not most, of my meals out are in the course of an often very long work day, during the course of which I may find myself pretty much anywhere in the East Bay.  Sometimes just having the chance to take a break in a pleasant environment, turn off my phone and relax for 15 minutes or a half hour is almost as important as the quality of the food I’m served.

Los Gallos fits that bill perfectly – it’s comfortable, the staff is friendly without being intrusive and the crowd appears to be mainly neighborhood folks, probably from the condos and town homes that lie directly to the southwest or the seemingly-endless subdivisions of 50’s and 60’s ranchers which make up much of central Concord to the north and east.  Overall, it’s a nice place to sit for a bit and decompress.

Don’t misunderstand – the food at Los Gallos is fine, although the real stand-out is the chips and salsa bar. They offer unlimited baskets of excellent (and perhaps made-on-premises?) chips and a great spread of various salsas, peppers, roasted onions etc, asking only that you “don’t waste” them. (I especially like the grilled jalapenos.)

I had my usual – the chile relleno plate

At $5.75, like everything else about this place, not the best deal in the world, but good and comfortable.

Note: Not to imply that any of my visitors are unlettered enough to need the reference in the title explained, but in the event you don’t have your copy at hand and want to read it again, click here.