Eagan >Arts & Entertainment > La Fonda
3665 Sibley Memorial Hwy, Saint Paul, MN | Directions 5512244.825424 -93.202246
Mon-Thu: 11:00 AM-10:00 PM;Fri-Sat: 11:00 AM-11:00 PM;Sun 11:00 AM-10:00 PM
Full disclosure: I tend to be a wimp when it comes to Mexican food. So I have never been brave enough to try the green chile sauce and have no idea if it's any good. And I doubt I'm alone here. No, La Fonda's food may not be authetically Mexican but...uh...hello? This is Minnesota - land of the Scandanavian taste buds. I know people who think black pepper is too spicy.
That being said...
I have been coming to this place since I was a little girl. It has changed hardly at all in all of those years. Some may see that as a bad thing as the building itself has obviously aged, but I don't care what the decor looks like - I go there for the FOOD. And in 20 years the food has always been predictably delicious.
I have always ordered one of the combination platters (all very reasonably priced), but lately I have been stuck on the one with the beef burrito, chicken enchilada and chile releno, all smothered with a generous amount of cheese. My mouth is watering just thinking about it! Luckily it reheats nicely the next day because it is always too much food to eat in one sitting. Last time I was there (a couple weeks ago), I decided to splurge and try the fried ice cream. (And by splurge I mean diet-wise, not price-wise). It was amazing!
It may not be in a "convenient" location, and having to pull a u-turn a block away to get to it from the other side of the freeway is a hassle, but I am glad to see that that doesn't seem to have affected business over the years - I know it hasn't stopped ME from coming back. I hope the restaurant gods continue to smile on this place and that it never changes!
We go to New Mexico every year. The salsa and the green chile at La Fonda are just exactly right. It is the best of traditional rustic NEW Mexico (as in the State of New Mexico) cuisine. Like the people who live there really eat. Do yourself a favor, order any of the platters with EXTRA green chile. You will instantly be transported to a diner in Taos, Los Alamos, or Las Vegas (NM). Yum. [Btw/ you should see the decor in the places with the best food in NM. La Fonda is like The Ritz!]
Now, for the person that told me it isn't authentic Mexican...please go learn the difference between Mexican and New Mexican and get back to me.
I should refine this for other readers. For instance, if you read Lily's initial review and the comments on the green chile referencing chile verde: yes, in parts of Mexico chile verde is based on tomatillos with a small amount of (usually jalapeno) peppers to season. In New Mexico, west Texas, Southern Colorado and this vicinity, rustic green chile is based on green chile peppers (Anaheim-type peppers, commonly referred to as Hatch or other local names) usually made with pork. In New Mexico, this is like base tomato sauce to Italian-American cooking. It is not a bad or incorrectly-made sauce - it is a different sauce entirely from chile verde based on tomatillos. Lily is quite fair in her appraisal below because she identifies what she was looking for - and it is chili verde based on tomatillos. If you expect the lime-like tartness of tomatillos, rustic `smoky flavored green chile is not what you want. The green chile is not in-authentic.
We've been eating there regularly for 17 years and never had poor service or a bad meal. We appreciate the friendly staff very much. Thanks
Food, Service,Price, Value and experience. And sometimes drink prices too. I like the tap beer specials, like for the Wilds Game.
Now before you go off on my star-rating, you purist foodies, indulge me this: La Fonda's is an institution in my family. I recall a time during middle school when my mom brought my brothers and me to La Fonda four times in one week. These days we do not get there nearly as often, but it's one of those places that you've got a spot for in your heart for life.
We all get the same thing: the Loborito: ground beef seasoned well and wrapped in a large tortilla and smothered with cheese and a special sauce... then baked. It's delicious.
Since my youth, I've traveled the world and sampled Latin foods wherever I can, including yum-yums in New Mexico (where the proprietor's family is from.) I know this isn't the most authentic place to get Latin eats.
But it is an excellent south metro institution worthy of your attention. Stop by, get a strong margarita and enjoy one of their hearty dishes. And if you need a place for your family to congregate every now and then... this could be it. It's the place we love to go with our mom. For old time's sake.
One of the greatest Mexican Restaurants around. Very Authentic
One of our favorite places – Good food and good service, great drinks!
Run away – The food wavered between bland, greasy, and just plain bad. Nothing was good in any way, from the chips to the salsa to the beans to the rice to the different entrees we got. A friend of mine warned me this place was bad. I should have listened.
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