City Paper is not for tourists
The Dish: enchiladas
The Location: Guajillo, 1727 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, (703) 807-0840
The Price: $11
The Skinny: Guajillo’s spin on this staple comes in threes—three to a plate and in three different varieties (cheese, chicken, or beef)—and in general the enchiladas benefit from shells that are soft and chewy in a way that sidesteps rubberiness. When it comes to fillings, the line-up is flexible (pictured: chicken, cheese, cheese). While the beef has yet to be sampled, the other fillings vary a bit. The cheese enchilada’s mild provolone and mozzarella make for a decent choice. The poultry, though, really comes alive: Prepared with rich flavors that include onion, garlic, and the namesake guajillo pepper, the chicken meat breaks down tenderly and tastily. The side of rice is solid, and the beans are smooth and not at all gritty. Still, the plate’s best feature may be its topping: A helping of queso fresco—”fresh cheese” imported from Mexico—covers the enchiladas, providing a mellow counterpoint to the flavors below.