Tacos, Adobo Pork, and More in Concord
What a whirlwind weekend! I’m still slightly tired (work might also have something to do with it) from the intense weekend of eating that I got back from 😂 Visit Concord reached out to me and were super kind to invite me to visit for Concord Comfort Week. I’d never been to Concord and was interested in seeing what the food scene was like. Little did I know that it was BUSTLING!
We started off with happy hour at Plate & Vine in the Hilton Concord where we were staying. Chef Philippe’s dishes were so tasty, and, besides the rosemary and gin cocktail I had 😉, I really loved the freshly made spaghetti and clams the most! The beef carpaccio was also tasty, and I loved the freshly baked focaccia they served us.
From Plate & Vine, my friend and I headed to Lima, a Peruvian bar and restaurant downtown. It seemed like it might have been a family-owned spot, but it was also POPPING! We got there around 6 and so many people showed up waiting for a table not even an hour later. We split some ceviche, lomo saltado, and the featured Comfort Food Week item: a delicious braised adobo pork. We also kept happy hour going and got some pisco sours, which I had never had before—delicious!
Also, a shoutout to the Hilton for welcoming us with a lovely dessert spread in our room—it was so sweet and delicious when we were watching movies back in our room after dinner!
The next day was CRAZY because we were asked to visit a whole list of places. My favorites? Coffee House, Out The Dough, Concord Tap House, and Puesto (omg Puesto was seriously amazing).
The day started at Coffee House where we got the Farm Fresh Breakfast Sandwich: a lovely bacon, egg, and cheese on brioche with some sweet pepper jelly. Nice and filling but I’m more of a savory eater, so the sweet pepper jelly wasn’t my favorite. I did love seeing local roasters on their shelves like Andytown!
Concord Tap House was a lovely local bar with beer, wine, and food. Their Comfort Food Week item was loaded fries, but it was nice to know that you had more options than that! You could get loaded fries with smoked beef or you could get an even tastier vegetarian version (in my opinion) with some white beurre blanc sauce that they made with veggie stock. In addition to that, you could get fries OR tots loaded, and, my favorite option, you could put an egg on it! Who can say no to tots and eggs?
For dessert (yes, we had dessert before dinner), we headed to Out the Dough for edible cookie dough. Their Comfort Food Week deal was pretty good: 20% off a double or triple scoop of their two original flavors. We got these flavors and then added a tiny scoop of the Greek Goddess (cookie dough with baklava in it) on top. For toppings, I went s’mores style and got some toasted marshmallow fluff and a drizzle of chocolate sauce. Again, I’m not a huge sweets person but the cookie dough was delish, especially that Greek Goddess! My friend also loved the cookie dough because she ate her entire half of the cup…and then some.
Now, Puesto. Omg, I could probably write a whole separate post about that dinner, but I truly, truly loved it. When you walk in, you immediately see color—the designs on the wall are lovely—and BOOZE 😂 Their bar is huge, and they have giant hanging shelves just filled with bottles. I loved that we got to sit in a booth by the kitchen where you could see all the cooking happening behind some glass.
Our server, who was from Mexico, explained that the chef/owners were actually from Mexico City so all the flavors at the restaurant were pretty authentic and stuff that he even recognized from home. Huge plus to hear that you’re getting some authentic food! We got esquite, the Comfort Food Week item, an order of tacos, guacamole, and steak (wait for it).
The esquite was pretty good for just corn 😂 It was warm, flavorful, and each kernel popped in your mouth when you chewed—so juicy! The guacamole was a special item so it came with cheese, pomegranate seeds, and walnuts. I was curious about that combination of flavors and textures, but it actually tasted pretty good when all mixed up and eaten with crispy chips.
Now the tacos…omg. Apparently, Puesto goes to some taco competition, and THREE of their tacos have won said competition, each in a different year. The corn tortillas are made by hand in the kitchen, so they’re fresh, and the meats were so flavorful! We got an off the menu taco called The Hero (lobster, filet mignon, and fried red onions), a chicken taco, and a pork taco.
The Hero was pretty tasty but it tasted like pub food—delicious but it felt like I was eating an American slider or something. The other tacos were just so good! Just enough sauce, heat, and cheese to keep me and my friend happy.
Continuing our taco journey was that steak I mentioned early. This wasn’t just any steak, it was tableside ribeye served with 2 salsas, avocado crema, chile relleno, fresh tortillas, and other toppings.
The chef came out of the kitchen with his little cart and this super hot stone bowl holding a rib eye steak. After putting the toppings and tortillas on our table, he cut up the steak and put it all back into that sizzling hot bowl before placing it on our table. The chile releno came out on one of those small cast iron plates, and he cut that up too before putting it back onto the plate and then on our table. After that, it was up to us to go ham on making our own tacos (which of course we did)!
Honestly, my friend Kirin and I agreed that Puesto was probably our most favorite meal out of the whole trip just because the ambiance, service, and food were all A+!
Concord was a hike if you’re going from San Francisco. I’m still not sure what else there is to do there besides eat and shop (which there is nothing wrong with!). If you live in East Bay or are in the area for something, check these places out and support the local business! You can also go see this AMAZING mural that we passed by while we were on our way to Out the Dough.