Monday, May 14, 2018

Mother's Day 2018

El Torito Restaurant, Santa Monica

Mother's Day 2018 was casual. I could have invited my Mom over for brunch at our house OR I could have brought brunch to her apartment. My Mom likes to GO OUT! She likes colorful, festive restaurants with palatable, American-style food. Larry and I like to frequent classic L.A. restaurants and out-of-the-way places. My motto is, "you can't eat atmosphere." My Mom, not so much. Atmosphere is important to her.
I was trying to think of a nice, bright place with non-spicy Mexican-American food close to her place. El Torito on Ocean Park Boulevard in Santa Monica was the perfect spot! It's a big, colorful building, lots of easy parking with good margaritas and non-threatening food. Mom loved it! She thought it was all so festive and fun. 
It was early. The bar was empty, but see how colorful and festive the decor is!

I must say, I was impressed with our strawberry margaritas. The waiter actually made the guacamole table-side. I've never seen that before. I should have asked him to go easy on the lime!

The food is corporate, no surprises here. It was tasty though and the important thing was that Mom had a good time. Roz and Larry ordered the shrimp enchiladas. I had a combo plate with a taco and chili relleno.
Shrimp Enchiladas
Taco, Chili Relleno, Rice and Beans with mini-Corn Souffle
We had a fun time and lots of laughs. Happy Mother's Day, Mom!

Mini-history lesson. This huge Santa Monica Business Park where El Torito and many office buildings are located was once the site of Douglas Aircraft. Larry's Dad worked at Douglas for decades. It's right next to Clover Field aka the Santa Monica Airport. This part of south Santa Monica, known as Sunset Park was chock full o' little war-time bungalow courts and small houses. There are still a few of the 1930s buildings left, but you have to hunt for them among the big homes and fancy condos. 
Douglas Aircraft Co., post WW II, now the site of the SM Business Park

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