When you pull in to the parking lot of Greenwich Plaza, you’ll see a liquor store, a massage parlor and a bar. Then you’ll spot Angela’s Cafe and Cantina No. 2.
There’s nothing fancy about Angela’s, but compared to its former location in an aging, tiny building on East Kellogg that burned to the ground in March 2011, this facility is like a palace to its many regulars. Angela’s aficionados know there are two Angela’s in town. The original is still at 901 E. Central. The owner of Angela’s Cafe and Cantina No. 2 is Pedro Perez, the father of the restaurant’s namesake, Angela.
The guacamole is fresh, a simple blend of avocados, tomatoes and finely diced onion. There doesn’t appear to be any diced jalapeno in it, so if spicy is your thing, you may want to ask to have it added. Our waitress highly recommended the fajitas, so we chose the steak and chicken combo. They came out sizzling in a piping hot cast-iron skillet. The grilled onions and peppers were sauteed to perfection, so they still had a fresh and distinct flavor, instead of melding together in an overcooked heap like in some restaurants.
We also sampled the green chili-smothered burrito, which actually isn’t green at all. Perez explained that habaneros, jalapenos and Anaheim chiles are used in making the tomato-based sauce, and by the time the peppers are simmered for hours to extract the flavors, the green color disappears. Mystery solved.
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the evening was the tamales. Tamales are my husband’s favorite, but I have never been a fan since many times they are mostly masa-based outer dough with just a hint of whatever meat filling is used inside. In this case, we could actually taste the generous portion of the tender pulled pork in the center. It was covered in a slightly spicy red sauce that complemented the sweetness of the corn dough. The Mexican rice served with many of the entrees is full of flavor, as are the refried beans.