I have amazing friends here in Washington, though many were not previously acquainted. As years go by, and the number of commitments increases, the need to combine friend face time increases. I push like minded people together—and friends of friends become friends. Case in point, my darlings Adrienne, Alana, and Daniela.
All three ladies share a few commonalities: they’re vivacious, intelligent, fierce, loyal, and beautiful in her own way. We’ve all spend time living abroad, enjoy traveling, good food, and intelligent conversation. We also share another commonality between the four of us: we’re always late.
Our group had agreed to convene for brunch at Guajillo, a hole-in-the-wall, family-owned Mexican spot off Wilson Boulevard in Arlington.
“I’m running my typical average 12 minutes late,” I began on the group text.
“I went the wrong way. I’m walking the right way now.” said Alana.
“I’m strolling past some serious strollers,” said Adrienne, unaccustomed to family-focused Arlington.
“OK I lied. I have no idea where this Uber driver is taking me,” I continued.
Eventually, I made it, and sat down with a mimosa. I took to the text chain to tout my early arrival—a rare feat.
Alana looked up from her phone a few tables away. “Cori!” she said in laughter.
We combined tables and ordered some mimosas while we waited for Daniela and Adrienne. The mimosas are cheap at four bucks a pop—and go down easy. The mimosas are light on the OJ, light on the palate, and heavy on the pour—exactly how a Bitch would want.
We started with Queso Fundido, because I love Queso Fundido. This dish is Tequila-flambeed Mexican cheese, with mushrooms, Poblano peppers and onions. While most fundidos are served in a skillet—this queso was plated. Additionally, the plated was loaded with vegetables and chorizo (which we added) rather than consisting of mostly cheese. It was a different take, which I really enjoyed. It made it unnecessary to dip the chips or to wrap the cheese into tortillas—you could eat the appetizer with a fork and knife.
As we waited for Daniela, our beautiful Brazilian who’s always tardy like yours truly, we ordered a second queso fundido. Then, later in the meal, ordered the traditional yellow queso for dipping.
We also ordered the maduros, or plaintains, as another appetizer. The dish was plate of fried sweet plantains with black beans and sour cream—served in a smiley face. This is very much a family restaurant, as evidenced by the smiley face and the pack of well-behaved toddlers at the table next to us. This was my least favorite part of the meal, as I am terrified of both sour cream and black beans. This caused me to find the smiley face anything but cute, whereas the other girls dipped the plantains into the dips without hesitation.
By contrast, Adrienne liked this dish the best, saying “The plaintains dipped in sour cream were the highlight of the meal. I didn’t want to share, but thought myself rather magnanimous in doing so.”
We also ordered the fried potatoes, served with a house-made mole, drizzled with crema fresca, and sprinkled with just a bit of white cheese. This second appetizer was also a low point—there was nothing wrong with the dish but it was nothing memorable. I’d skip ordering next time.
The service at Guajillo is friendly, relaxed and attentive. It’s clearly a family-run business, as they employees all seem to know each other well. They attended to our needs—keeping the mimosas coming—throughout the lengthy, leisurely brunch.
For my entrée, I ordered the huevos con chorizo, which was delicious. The dish, scrambled eggs with lots of chorizo, and fresh roasted tomato, was hearty and filling but also fresh and flavorful. It was just a really great dish.
Our entrees were all served with two sides: a side of fresh fruit salad and a pickled red beet salad. I was pleasantly surprised by the addition, which added a healthy, fresh component to the entrees not mentioned on the menu. The fruit salad included slices of apples and pineapple, with a light green sauce for dipping. It was great—as was the beet salad.
Adrienne ordered Huevos Pochados, a Mexican take on an Eggs Benedict. The poached eggs were served atop corn tarts, with avocado and a roasted poblano Hollandaise. There were plenty of fresh avocado slices, and the dish was served with a side of rice as well as the two salads.
“The side of fruit salad is to be noted a nice and welcome change from like fried potatoes as a side with a typical brunch. It was good and palate cleansing and conceptually distinguished the menu from its competitors. I’d say the fruit on the side was a solid competitive advantage of guajillo in conception and execution,” she added.
Alana and Daniela both ordered different versions of the Chilaquiles, fried corn tortilla strips, served with red salsa, Queso fresco, and Mexican cream. You can order the dish with lamb, steak, chicken, or masitas. It looked damn delicious.
The Bitches say: A-. Guajillo serves authentic Mexican cuisine in a fun, unpretentious, and family-friendly environment. It’s a family run, authentic Mexican spot that’s great for bottomless for your girlfriends—or your girlfriends and their toddlers if you’re a Virginia mama.
1727 Wilson Blvd.
Bitch Biz: Guajillo partners with Bitches Who Brunch. While we do receive compensation from the company, this article was written independently by Bitches Who Brunch.