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Combo patter: El Mexsal rolls off, onto, the tongue

By Logan Molyneux - Daily Herald - | Mar 11, 2010
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Pictured is the Combination Guadalajara from El Mexsal - Mexican and Salvadorian food - in Provo. Image taken, Tuesday, March 9, 2010. PATRICK SMITH/Daily Herald
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Pictured is the from Shrimp Cocktail from El Mexsal - Mexican and Salvadorian food - in Provo. Image taken, Tuesday, March 9, 2010. PATRICK SMITH/Daily Herald
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Pictured is the from Enchiladas from El Mexsal - Mexican and Salvadorian food - in Provo. Image taken, Tuesday, March 9, 2010. PATRICK SMITH/Daily Herald

We’ll give you one guess what two kinds of food El Mexsal in Provo serves.

Correct! Mexican and Salvadoran. (Sort of like saying you’re from Orvo.) Though it’s not half and half — the menu features quite a bit more Mexican food than Salvadoran cuisine. Unfortunately for us, the Salvadoran dishes were listed in Spanish with no description, and we weren’t brave enough to try one.

But we can tell you the Mexican food is both tasty and plentiful. In fact, one of the dishes we ordered, the Jose Especial, was described as being big enough for two people, and boy were they right. It’s a crisp tortilla laid flat and piled high with beans, cheese, your choice of meat, lettuce, tomato, avocado and olives. There are so many flavors it’s difficult to get all of them in one forkful. There’s so much lettuce and generous slices of tomato and avocado that the dish eats like a salad. Even the hungry diner in our party who ordered it could not finish more than half.

We were also pleased with the size of our Mi Rancherito Special. Because the beef steak is sliced thin, they serve you a piece that nearly covers the plate. It’s topped with grilled onions and peppers that lend the meat an excellent flavor. Also, it was soft and not fried crisp like we’ve seen at other places.

Our favorite dish was easily the enchiladas, which are soft and saddled with a delicious red sauce. The blend of melted cheese inside was just the right amount, and the corn tortilla was soft without being mushy. We’ll be back for a double order next time.

El Mexsal offers a bevy of combination plates, ranging from $5 to $10, or you can order exactly what you like from the a la carte section of the menu. There are several seafood dishes and even some egg dishes, including the ever-popular Huevos Rancheros.

Our service was friendly, if only a little slow. The restaurant’s setting in a strip mall in south-central Provo is nothing fancy, but the inside of the restaurant is clean and quiet. And be prepared to have leftovers.

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