Teresa’s Mosaic Cafe El Segundo, CA

My Mexican food challenge began in El Segundo in a small strip mall that hosts Valentino’s Pizza & Katmandu furniture, two places I’ve seen a ton of times during my tenure in the South Bay. Teresa’s Mosaic Cafe opened last year  and seemed pretty popular with local workers in the area as it was practically filled to capacity when I stopped in for some lunch.

It’s a good sized place. Not too cramped, not huge. I liked how it let a lot of natural light in. Definitely set the lively mood. If that wasn’t enough, numerous Mexican flags hung like banners through the area. There were even some pinatas & Cinco de Mayo signs around. An all year Cinco de Mayo feel? I could go for that.

I started off with the obligatory chips & salsa. I found the chips a bit hard while the salsa was slightly spicy. Nonetheless I couldn’t stop eating and I had to remind myself not to fill up before lunch. Yes the menus had your usual tacos & enchiladas but also more entrees like carne asada & steak picado.

I sipped on some sweet and milky horchata while I waited for my meal. It had a very strong cinnamon flavor that went perfectly with the cool & breezy day we were having.

Moments later, my carnitas arrived. The meat fell apart, it was just so tender and golden. The best part were the fatty bits! Yes I know, so bad, but so good! The rice was also very warm, with a hint of lime and firm to the bite. The refried beans tasted fresh, along with the cheese that was still stringy as I went for each bite. The pico de gallo had bits of jalapeños that gave it a little kick that contrasted the other flavors of the dish very well.  I tried to make a small taco with the meat, guacamole, & beans but the corn tortillas were super warm! I instead just ate the tortillas alongside the meal which were fresh, sweet and came apart very easily when torn. The portion was pretty big and I ended up taking some of it home.

I really enjoyed my meal at Teresa’s. The service was also very attentive despite how busy it was. I’ll be sure to be back soon to try more of what they have.


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