The place was opened four years ago by a Seattle native, Charlie Wilker. He also worked at the French Laundry in Napa and the Lark Restaurant in Seattle. Charlie's was formerly known as the La Pajarita and Mango's Grill under different owners. Charlie's mother, Melinda, helps run the place.
I also found out that there is no bakery in town of any culinary significance but I ran into this Mike person who is a baker and supplies various eateries with New York cheesecake, apple pie, and other sweets. He said he makes everything in his home kitchen … no need to use commercial kitchens here.
Tonight, the ‘taco man’ went to Tacos on the Street restaurant at the corner of Calle Coral and Huachinango. It is interesting to note that all the street names in town are named after sea life. All the tables on the street were taken so I had to eat inside, a bit steamy and muggy compared to the calle seating All they serve here are corn or flour rib eye tacos with extras (see pic). And they only serve flan for dessert which I had to try. All were tasty. Good thing I had a cerveza to put out the fire from the roasted chillies served on the 'extras’ plate which comes with the taco.
In case you are wondering, the town’s name comes from a cross (La Cruz) that is made of Huanacaxtle wood. The giant cross is located at the town's entrance. The wood is very sturdy and long lasting akin to teak. The area had an abundance of the wood 40 years ago, but no more. Most of the wood doors and furnishings in the house where I am staying are made from this wood. About 1,600 residents live here comprising of local Mexicans, Canadians, Americans, a few Europeans, and an interesting assortment of eclectic characters.
While walking about the village, I meandered by the Emiliano Zapata elementary school. The entire school compound, including the soccer field, was walled off with a chain link fence. The classes were held outside and all the kids were neatly dressed, all wearing uniforms. It seems kids are better behaved and more respectful in Mexico.
More on the town later.