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The Shame of the Yankees

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ESPADRILLES? Since when are espadrilles Texans’ “indigenous footwear”??? In his lead to the most pathetic article on Tex-Mex food I’ve ever read (in today’s New York Times “Dining Out” section), non-native-Texan Joe Drape says espadrilles are our native shoe. Dude: Espadrilles are French. Huaraches are what you mean; those are the Mexican sandals, and by extension, Texan.
We wear a lot of Italian loafers around here too, but they ain’t native.
But that’s just the beginning of the rampant cluelessness of an article that claims to be all about Tex-Mex, and then goes on to mention exactly three restaurants in the entire state. Three! In a state of thousands of Mexican restaurants. Not only that, one of them, El Mirador in San Antonio, isn’t even Tex-Mex!!! It hates that label. Sure, El Mirador serves some chili and yellow cheese enchilada plates; everybody does. But that’s just to keep the riots down.
Understand, I like all the places he touts: El Mirador in San Antonio, Herrera’s in Dallas, El Jardin in Houston. But couldn’t he have at least stuck in one from Austin, like El Rancho, and one from Fort Worth–like Joe T. Garcia’s, the most famous Mexican restaurant in the entire state? It’s so big it has its own zip code. I think the guy got on a plane, flew to each city, ate there, and got back on the plane.
But that’s what happens when somebody from New Yawk City writes about our Mexican food. He may have gone to college here, but he still doesn’t get it.
Not to toot our own horn–oh, all right, we’re tooting it–see TM’s story on Tex-Mex, from August 2003. At least we went to more than three restaurants.

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