Printed with the permission of the Alpine Avalanche
Not long ago, a friend shared a photo on social media of a plate of enchiladas from Alicia’s Burrito Place, a restaurant I’d never heard of yet passed by regularly on our trips to Blue Water Natural Foods and to and from Terlingua. After hearing rave reviews, we decided to check it out.
Alicia’s, owned by Priscilla Aguilar, has been an Alpine favorite for about 60 years. While Priscilla only works certain days now, her daughters have made sure that the family business keeps up their reputation for delicious burritos, burgers and traditional Mexican favorites like enchiladas, chile con carne and more, serving breakfast and lunch every day.
The restaurant started out with seating at the bar and just a couple tables, and over the years, grew to have a dining room with additional seating. Our waitress, Heather Arias, was efficient and attentive and brought our food quickly. Everything is cooked to order. Chips and salsa make any wait time a non-issue for us.
My husband ordered the Zo Burrito – chicken fajitas, cheese and grilled pico de gallo wrapped in a large flour tortilla. I ordered the Asado plate – shredded pork in red chile sauce served with beans, rice, a flour tortilla and homemade, fresh-cut French fries. I’d never before had a Mexican plate served that included French fries without having to order them separately.
Below are his burrito and my plate, fries not pictured, and I shared mine with him this time.
I was tempted to have the Mexican Cheeseburger, which was a burger patty topped with cheese and refried beans, lettuce, tomatoes, onions and mustard all wrapped in a flour tortilla, but decided to save that for another visit. Even then, I’ll have to decide between ordering the Mexican Cheeseburger or the Trash Can Burrito – scrambled eggs with potatoes, sausage, beans, beef and cheese. Or the KK Burger… grilled chicken fajitas with pico de gallo nestled in a bun.
With 60 years under their belts, I don’t think you can go wrong with anything you order at Alicia’s. In fact, Texas Monthly listed them as one of the Top Picks and Recommended Restaurants in the entire state of Texas in their February 2013 issue.
Update: Here are a couple pictures from our lunch yesterday… he had the Asado plate, and I had the Chile Verde plate. We figured out we can order one plate and a burrito and share everything because it was a LOT of food… every plate is served with a big flour tortilla and homemade French fries.
Alicia’s Burrito Place is a not-so-hidden gem at 708 E. Avenue G, just off Highway 118 heading south in Alpine, and they even have a drive-thru window for to-go orders. Call your orders in at (432)837-2802. They are open daily from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
West Texas Asado de Puerco
(inspired by Alicia’s and not to be confused with New Mexico Adovado)
16 dried ancho chile peppers
10 cloves fresh garlic, minced
3 pounds boneless pork shoulder cut into 1-inch pieces
3 tablespoons bacon grease or peanut oil
1/2 medium white onion, chopped
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
2 teaspoons Mexican oregano
Salt and pepper to taste
Remove stems and as many seeds as possible from dried chiles and put them in a large bowl with two cloves of crushed garlic and 1 teaspoon of salt. Cover with warm water and let them soak for 8 hours to reconstitute. Drain water and blend chiles with 1/2 cup fresh water, until a thick paste is formed.
Cook diced onion in 1 tablespoon of your oil on medium heat for about 10 minutes or until it starts to brown. Add the remaining 8 cloves of crushed garlic (about 1/2 cup) and cook for one more minute. Add the chile paste, 1 cup of water, chopped cilantro, oregano, salt and pepper to taste.
Cook chile sauce on medium heat for five minutes, stirring occasionally.
Generously salt and pepper the pork cubes. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to a Dutch oven or pot and brown meat on all sides. Add chile sauce to browned meat and cook, covered, on low heat for 2-1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. Serve with warm tortillas.