Yelp Review # 3 - Pueblo (Tapas Bar) in Costa Mesa, CA

Flavor that led me into letting out some of the loudest food moans...
— Frank Yslas

Yelp Review # 3 - Pueblo (Tapas Bar) in Costa Mesa, CA

 Albondigas ($12) & Gambas al Ajillo ($15) at Pueblo in Costa Mesa, CA. frankstrilllife.com

Albondigas ($12) & Gambas al Ajillo ($15) at Pueblo in Costa Mesa, CA. frankstrilllife.com

 

Backstory:

My friend and I were craving tacos so we tried to go to the fancy taco spot inside the OC MIX but when we arrived, they informed us that they were only serving $79 four course plates. So not wanting to spend that much money on tacos, we dashed out the door faster than Sonic The Hedgehog and stumbled upon this treasure. We noticed this place, because there was a crowd standing around the hostess stand. We knew we had to check this place out because whenever there is a long wait for a spot, you know that the restaurant is practically guaranteed to be firrrrreeee!!! We approached the hostess stand and she told us that there was a 45 minute wait. We were not in a rush so we decided to put our names down. The great thing about this place is that they take down your number and text you when your table is ready. This is great and convenient because rather than hovering around the hostess stand growing impatient, you can chill and relax inside the OC Mix. 

Atmosphere: (5 out of 5)
The atmosphere is very dope. It's a small, and intimate restaurant with dim lighting which enhances the overall ambience. If you have ever daydreamed about a Tapa bar somewhere in Spain, then this would be the spot you imagined. It is very hipster.

Customer Service: (5 out of 5)
Our only interactions with the staff occurred with the hostess and with our waitress/bartender. Both were extremely friendly and wore a warm smile on their faces at all times. Our waitress accidentally charged my credit card twice, but she was quick to fix the problem and was extremely apologetic. 

Menu: (5 out of 5)
The menu was filled with words that I could not pronounce. It also contained numerous ingredients that I have never even heard of...yet, somehow, every dish sounded soooo delicious. 

Both the food and drink menus were a single sheet, front and back. Both were in the Goldilocks zone when it came to the amount of items listed. Not too less and not too many. It was organized into sections nice and neatly, so it led to simple navigation of the menu. 

Food: (5 out of 5)

1. We ordered the Albondigas ($12) - Lamb meatballs, sofrito (aka tomato sauce), chickpeas, & mint yogurt. This plate was phenomenal....the tender and flavorful Lamb balls were drenched in luscious waves of red sauce, while copious amounts of chickpeas surfed these tasty waves...yowzas!! Also, just when you thought this dish couldn't get any better, they served it with crispy, buttery, bite-sized pieces of bread. I dipped the bread into the sauce and that combination was fierce!!! The combination of these two produced an outrageous flavor that led me into letting out some of the loudest food moans I have ever expressed in my life!!! 

2. Gambas al Ajillo ($15) - Head-on prawns, shrimp, garlic, & castelvetrano olives. The prawns looked exactly like "Predator" from "Alien v. Predator." So they had me on the defensive at first...but once I took a bite out of one of them, my nerves immediately subsided. This dish was delicious. The shrimp was tender and flavorful. Also, generally I hate olives, but these olives complimented the shrimp better than the way Paula Abdul would compliment every single contestant on American Idol.

Drink: (5 out of 5)
I ordered a glass of their Sangria Spritzer (I think $12). One sip of this and I was transported into another dimension...the kind of dimension where Celene Dion is singing to you in her angelic voice. The drink was heavenly. 

Overall: (5 out of 5)
If you are in the area, I would highly recommend you try this place out. It was definitely worth the 45 minute wait. Pueblo has high-quality food & drinks, friendly service and a hip atmosphere.