Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Oregon Meets Pupusa: Nuvia's Restaurant + Pupuseria, Echo Park, CA

I always keep extra snacks in my purse for Heather, my Oregonian bestie. This is for my own protection, so she doesn't bite my head off when she gets hungry, which is basically ever 30 minutes. On this particular day we were post BBQ dinner and tecate + hot dog on stick snack at the Roller Derby and on our way to meet a friend for a drink in Echo Park. Heather begins to complain:

"Can we drive through taco bell - I need to eat something before we meet your friend or else I'm going to be in a bad mood."

How dare you use the T.B. word in LA, Heather. Do you know where you are? 

I quizzed her on latino cuisine and from the way she laughed when I mentioned pupusa I knew the perfect Taco Bell replacement. She had no idea what a pupusa was. It would be like a baby eating ice cream for the very first time and the perfect way of escaping of wrath of Hungry Heather. 
We were all mildly shocked to see a quasi band/disc jockey set up next to the register, but were warmly greeted and took a seat in one of the oilcloth laden booths and the band stormed on with ranchero-esque beats.  Although the menu is on the wall, there is also a more extensive tri-fold menu available. Heather, usually a power and control type of woman, had surrendered herself to dazed smile and let me take the ordering reins. We started with a 40 oz. of Salvadorian beer, Regia. Smooth, crisp and icy cold. Served with limes, of course.

 The waitress plopped down a basket of fresh, warm chips and a duo of salsas: a robust tomato-chipotle based version and a liquefied bean based version. Both delicious.
We sampled three versions of pupusas. The queso and lorroco and the chicharron and queso were a must as they are the cornerstones of papusa combination. The third was a queso and mixed veggie. The papusas were by no means greasy. The sour tangy cabbage slaw was fresh and added a bright contrast to the grilled cheesed filled dough. God I love pupusas.
Oregon was happy and not going to bite my head off. Now on to do some interpretational Greek dancing.

Nuvia's Restaurant & Papuseria
1525 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
(213) 977-0577


SinoSoul said...

I like cortido way more than pupusas. Is that wrong?

Banana Wonder said...

Tony - hah you so healthy! I'm sure there are lots of people out there that would be more than willing to give you their extra cortidos.