PANCHO'S - DOWNTOWN SUMMERLIN
BY VEGAS FOOD NERD
This Mexican spot has been in Downtown Summerlin for quite some time now. I have been able to visit on a few occasions—one where they knew that I was going to write about the restaurant, and another time when they didn’t. On both occasions I went for lunch service. One of the coolest parts about this place is its vibe. You feel as if you are being transported to a square in the heart of Mexico City. It’s interior is bright and vibrant, with tropical foliage all around and a big water fountain running in the center of the restaurant.
I’m an enchilada addict. Admitting it is the first step, right?
So on my first visit, my friend and I both tried two different kinds of enchiladas, their Chicken Enchilada Suizas, and their Carnitas version. One plate we got with their black beans and queso fresco, and the other with traditional refried beans. The food arrived pretty quickly and was hot, gooey, flavorful—just how you want to get your fix of this Mexican offering. They arrived two enchiladas to a plate, and were topped with sliced avocado, which is something you don’t typically get on enchiladas at other Valley stops. I liked the creamy texture that they added to the overall experience. My friend enjoyed them just as much. We traded each other one enchilada each, just to be sure we could try all the different flavors. The portions were big, so we were too full to sample much of anything else. Our waitress was really fun and upbeat, but she said the following and I knew I had to come back soon: “The Chile Relleno tastes just like the ones my mom used to make for me.”
On my return trip, (the one where they were fully aware that I was writing about them), I knew at least one item that would be on my order. I started with a House Margarita on the rocks. And on our waiter’s recommendation, we ordered a Scallops Ceviche to share with each other. The Ceviche was good. It wasn’t too spicy, but on yet another recommendation of our server, a few drops of hot sauce on each bite made it hit the perfect spice level. For our entrees, my friend opted for the Chicken Enchiladas Suizas, and I ordered that Chile Relleno, and Shredded Beef Enchilada combination plate. All very good takes on the dishes, but yes, that Chile Relleno was pretty killer. My mom didn’t used to make them for me, but if she had, I would imagine she’d want it to turn out like this. I don’t think I will be able to not order this on any repeat visits to this place.
A lot of the online review sites, such as Yelp, (or as I like to call them: the “digital mafia”) have a few complaints about the pricing at Pancho’s, but they do have many Happy Hour specials, and frequently send out buy one entrée get one free, etc… And while it might not be my all-time favorite Mexican spot in the Valley, after both visits my tummy left very happy. And when you do go out, isn’t that really the point?
I remember when the billboards started cropping up all over town for this other Mexican eatery with locations in Henderson, Summerlin, and now just off the Las Vegas Strip. First I chuckled at the name and then I made a silent Food Nerd vow to eat there. Then I heard about the ‘Scorpion shot,’ and I wanted to go and make someone else do that. When the Strip location opened recently, I was lucky enough to get invited to finally try their food. It was their press opening and it was fun. A giant screen played music video nostalgia, and my husband and I were treated to a sampling of the restaurant’s offerings. We got to try their Triple Dip, a yummy combo of queso dip, salsa, and guacamole. Their Daddy’s Wings were a tasty buffalo wing, cooked well. Then we got to try an assortment of their Nacho combinations. Our favorites were the Thai Chicken Nachos, and the Chicken Enchiladas Nachos (another sign of my addiction probably).
This is a fun night out on the Strip that I hope the tourists will find. The place is in a bit of an awkward location that I hope tourists don’t miss as they walk and/or stumble down the Strip. I will be checking out their other locations very soon. And soon, very soon, I will probably make my husband the victim of that Scorpion shot. Ha-ha.
TWIN PEAKS –
BIG BOOBS AND COLD BEER
I’ve never been to a Hooters. I’ve heard that their wings are just meh. But another “boob”-themed restaurant has invaded our town with a couple of locations, called Twin Peaks. Work at the one on the Strip and you are revealing a lot of boob and quite a bit of ass. Work at the one in Henderson and you don’t have to show quite so much. The main draw of this place though, if you are a beer drinker, is the beer. Order it girl-sized or man-sized. They cool their beer to 29 degrees, making it an icy delight, that trust me, you will crave and be lured back in for more. I know it’s a chain, but icy beer lures me in every time. And the food is pretty good, not mind-blowing, but I don’t really think that is the point. If you are looking for Boobs and Ice Cold Beer, get your eyes and gut over to Twin Peaks.
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