WHERE THE FIESTA DOESN’T STOP
Fans of fun, hearty fare and festive libations in the San Fernando Valley need look no further than Jalapeño Pete’s in Studio City.
A Mexican taqueria and bar, it more sports bar than I personally prefer, but it does offer an energetic vibe where the food is solid and the cocktails are decent. Located on busy Ventura Boulevard, Pete’s is a neighborhood hot spot where you’ll be hard pressed not to have a good time.
During our recent visit we started with the popular House Margarita and Don Netwo with bourbon, El Silencio Mezcal, agave, angostura bitters, orange bitters, jalapeño strilled with rocks and burnt orange peel and good times soon followed.
If you’re looking for hearty fare, go for the Guac de la Casa with avocado, tomatillo, cilantro, onion, garlic, and lime. The Street Corn is a solid choice with grilled sweet corn, tapatio aioli, cotija cheese, and cayenne. And consider the Asada Fries, with crispy shoestring fries, salsa roja, black beans, jack cheese, marinated carne asada, crema, and guacamole a must-have. Likewise, the Nachos del Rey with grilled chicken, nacho cheese, black beans, pico de gallo, crema, aguacatillo, and cotija cheese is a solid dish.
The Short Rib Taquitos with red wine braised short rib, pico de gallo, cotija and Monterey jack cheese is a great choice as it’s tasty, fried goodness.
The tacos are the specialty at Jalapeño Pete’s—they come in hard shell, soft shell or lettuce shell. At mostly $3 per taco, feast on your favorite or mix and match to your heart’s content.
The Butternut Squash taco is a good meatless option but I didn’t think the mushrooms were really necessary as the squash itself was so tasty. Unfortunately, I found the Fried Avocado taco, another meatless option, bland.
The Grilled Chicken taco with flame broiled chicken breast, salsa roja, onion and cilantro, is legit. I loved the balance and the tenderness of the chicken.
The Al Pastor taco with pork, pineapple and aguacatillo is good but it needs more of al pastor flavor. The Grilled Shrimp taco was solid although I wish it would have more crunch to it. The Asada with flame broiled skirt steak is a good one—and it’s even better when you add guacamole. The Carnitas are good too although as it was very flavorful but a little too “stew” in its consistency. The Short Ribs with red wine braised short rib was great although it is heavy and filling but in a good way.
And consider the Churro Ice Cream Waffle and absolute must for dessert. Prepared with cinnamon sugar, tossed Belgian waffle, vanilla ice cream, banana maple foster sauce, this decadent bad boy serves two but you might be tempted to have one all to yourself as it’s that good And if you’re like me and love liquid dessert, then the Sweet Pecan Pie with spiced rum, sweet cream, cinnamon syrup, and a candy pecan rim is a winner too.
A nightly special is the Buy One, Get One Free Drink offered every night from 9pm to 2am. And don’t forget Taco Tuesday where all tacos are $2 from 4pm to midnight.
If you like hanging out in a sports bar, you’ll love this place. If you want high energy and volume, you’ll like it here too. Otherwise you can dine al fresco and enjoy some good Mexican comfort food and drinks. It’s a great setting for a fun night out this summer.
Jalapeño Pete’s is located 11618 Ventura Blvd in Studio City. Open Mon-Fri from 4pm to 2am; Saturday from 12pm to 2am; Sunday from 9:30am to 2am. Call 818-579-4264.
Story By: Jose Martinez
Photography Courtesy Of: Jalapeño Pete’