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Restaurant of the Week: El Mexicali Cafe

Indio, California: Do you recall when we visited the El Mexicali Cafe in Indio... the Mexican place on the train tracks that is famous for a shrimp-stuffed pepper appetizer served with soy sauce? They have opened a branch very close to our RV park, in a little strip-mall. Today we decided to check it out for lunch.

Considering the Mother Ship is in an ancient structure, with bathrooms only accessible from outside the building, the La Quinta restaurant is nearing luxury.

We did not arrive until nearly 2 o'clock. We both exercised for an hour this morning. Instead of jogging for an hour, I rode my bike for an hour. I was regretting this decision immediately after and will probably not be able to walk tomorrow. So sore!

Anyway, due to the time of our visit, the restaurant wasn't very busy and we were able to chat with the manager - the granddaughter of the woman who opened the original El Mexicali 31 years ago.

I am not going to rave about the food. The items we ordered were very good indeed, but there are a zillion Mexican restaurants in the area where decent fare can be obtained. El Mexicali is set-apart by their famous shrimp appetizer and the fact that some of their food is actually a little spicy. So many Mexican restaurants tone-down the fire to appease the local population. 

Read that: snowbirds sucking on antacids.

I tried a combo plate with a chicken enchilada and a chile relleno. The relleno was very, very good and fiery hot. Loved that. The chicken enchilada was a chicken enchilada. I did not try the rice and beans. (Usually I ask for my meal ala carte, so I won't be tempted to eat all those carbs, but today I forgot.)

My Driver ordered the heart-healthy steak and cheese quesadilla. I had a little bite and thought it was pretty yummy... if you like marinated grilled beef smothered in cheese... and who doesn't?

VERDICT? Yes. I think it would be best to go with a group of friends for dinner, so we could order several appetizers to share. The dining room is attractive, new and very clean. The help (the family) was very friendly and service was good. The menu is absolutely huge - so much to choose from. Free parking. Beer & Wine only (no margaritas). Kids menu, and they are open for breakfast.

El Mexicali Cafe
47-150 Washington St., Suite B
La Quinta, CA 92253

Until my next update, I remain, your spicy correspondent.

RV PARK:  Motorcoach Country Club - The Crown Jewel of Motorcoach Resorts. 400 sites, three pools, three spas, fitness center, golf, bocce ball, tennis, 2-mile waterway, fine-dining restaurant, bar, security, planned activities, perfectly maintained. Sites for sale or rent.