Isabel and I set out Wednesday night to try out a new hot spot in El Segundo called Calo Kitchen + Tequila. Being newer members, we were very excited for our first food tasting as Spoon members. On the drive over, we were excited to be heading to a new part of town away from campus.

When we pulled into the easy, convenient parking lot in a trendy suburban area, we knew we were in for a treat. The sleek modern look of the outside of the restaurant and the friendly waiting staff made for an amazing first impression. We were shown to a booth area upstairs and were enamored with the beautiful decorating. The vibe was very relaxed and the decorations gave the place a rustic feel with bourbon barrels, wooden tables, dark red booths and dark lighting. The music was not too loud or fast which created the perfect atmosphere for dinner.

Isabel Bosch

Margaritas & Salsa

Once seated, we met the owner, Clemente, and got the scoop on Calo Kitchen + Tequila which has been open for about four months now. He offered up an extensive list of popular drinks, and we decided to start with the pineapple margaritas. The sweet pineapple was what made us decide on the drink, but the nice spice of jalapeño kept us sipping. The small slice of pineapple on the edge with the sliced jalapeno made for a nice presentation. They also brought out some chips, salsa and bean dip. The presentation felt authentic with the organically shaped chip and sauce bowls. The bean dip was very flavorful with a hint of spice. Next, we were joined by the two other food bloggers who would be dining with us.

Isabel Bosch

Main Courses

Now, the fun part: the main courses. Calo Kitchen + Tequila started out with a bang with their shrimp taquitos, which had just the right amount of crisp. They were paired with a chipotle-mayo dipping sauce to keep you wanting more. This set the bar high for the rest of the plates; however, they did not disappoint.

Isabel Bosch

Next came the short rib enchiladas. I could have eaten the whole plate if I didn’t have to share. The enchilada was covered in a delicious red sauce and a nice layer of cheese. It was served with lime rice that had corn kernels sprinkled in for a nice touch and black beans on the side. I thought this dish would be hard to beat, but then out came shrimp and crab enchiladas, which were another knockout.

Isabel Bosch

This was served with salsa verde and fresh slices of avocado on top. At this point, there was no choosing a favorite. Next came the halibut tacos. You cannot go wrong with a classic fish taco with fresh avocado and salsa. In addition to tacos, we had the privilege of trying the carnitas which were cooked to perfection! The meat was so tender and the salsa on top kept it juicy, but the crispyness made the carnitas stand out!

Isabel Bosch

It had this delicious crisp on the outside when you first took a bite that completed the dish! Any meat lover is bound to find this dish as their repeat time and time again, especially with the side of guacamole, refried beans, and Spanish rice. The Spanish rice is definitely worth mentioning because of how the chef takes this familiar dish to another level. Last, but most definitely not the least, was the pineapple el pastor, which was the perfect finishing touch to an unforgettable meal. The spices of the pork and the sweetness of the pineapple created a delicious marriage to make the best taco. I will definitely be coming back for more.

Behind the Scenes

With our bellies full and not a hangry person in sight, we had the pleasure of observing the kitchen in full swing. The bar was a sleek black and white granite with a pop of color in the hanging lights. The kitchen staff was busy prepping all the meals for the guests. The restaurant was lively for a Wednesday night which, by the taste of the food, was no surprise.

Isabel Bosch

I will definitely be heading back to Calo Kitchen + Tequila as soon as possible, bringing my friends with me so they to can experience the yummy Mexican food they have to offer! 

Still hungry after the meal? Check out some of these dessert places in DTLA to satisfy your sweet tooth. 

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