BEST LATINO GROCERY - 2004
All this place needs is a few live chickens to peck at the crumbs on the floor and it could be any market in Guadalajara. This grocery-cum-cafeteria supplies its Latino neighbors with guisados, homemade tortillas, and red pork tamales in a voluptuous smoked chili sauce, as well as saint's day votives, Virgin Mary bird baths, paper flowers, wooden dolls, and baskets. The takeout is made fresh on the premises, and you can select from five different salsas at different levels of heat made with tomatoes and/or tomatillos. The place smells of fresh and dried peppers, smoke, leather, and sweat. Shiny red peppers spill from bins, some tiny as pinky nails, others that look like bananas; and there are dried peppers on ropes and woven into wreaths, or stacked on the shelves like old shoes. Here you will find fresh and dried tamale husks, as well as ample advice on whether to fill them with yellow cornmeal or white. If you speak Spanish, you're in luck, though most of the clerks speak English when they feel like it. It's just like south of the border.