Destination Oak Ridge: Jalisco Mexican Restaurant

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I was only spending one night in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and I wanted to make sure I picked a good place for dinner. I was pretty limited in my choices, since I didn’t rent a car and couldn’t explore much area. Luckily, there were a bunch of restaurants on the road near the hotel. There was a restaurant that caught my attention.

Jalisco Mexican Restaurant
212 S. Illinois Avenue, Oak Ridge, TN

This restaurant was located conveniently across the street.

I figured, Mexican food would be a great choice. I’ve never really had authentic Mexican cuisine from an actual Mexican restaurant before, and so I really wanted to give it a try.

I was a little skeptical at first. From the looks on the outside of the restaurant, I did not know what to expect from the food or the service. I had to take a closer look. After looking at their dinner specials outside the entrance, I decided it was worth a shot.

The inside was very decorative, with Corona banners hanging from pillar to pillar. There were critic reviews and awards on the walls. There was also a large screen TV from which they played Spanish karaoke videos. It was very colorful. They offered a Mexican buffet, which I believe is probably the bestseller. I noticed the other customers taking advantage of the buffet.

I sat on one of the booths while I decided on what to order.

While I debated between the buffet and the featured dinner special of the day, the waiter provided me with some complimentary tortilla chips and salsa.

I decided to go with the dinner special. I did not have the greatest appetite that evening (after all the traveling and such), and so, a buffet might have been too overwhelming for me. The dinner special for that night was a fajita styled Taco salad, with choice of chicken or steak.

Taco Salad, fajita styled with steak
Deep fried corn tortilla bowl, filled with shredded lecture, cheese, steak, tomatoes, etc.

LOOKY: mouth watering (above average)
TASTY: oh so fabulous (above average)
Remarks: I have got to say that it was the prettiest little taco salad I’ve ever had. I enjoyed it a lot. When it first arrived at the table, the plate was still nice and hot. I liked the way it wasn’t super greasy or anything. Also, the steak was extremely delicious. I couldn’t figure out what type of sauce or flavoring was used for the steak, but it was great. It didn’t overpower the simple salad. I felt that the portions were just right.

Take a closer look.

It was a remarkable dinner. The corn tortilla chips were nice and crispy. I think they make it in the restaurant. The taco salad was just right, and had the tastiest steak. To make the dinner complete, I just had to order a bottle of Corona. This meal was very delightful, and the best part, was that the bill came to just a little under $10. I don’t believe I would have been able to get a deal like this in New York City. It was awesome Mexican food. If I ever return, I’m definitely trying out the buffet.

Jalisco Mexican on Urbanspoon

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