Mom and pop eateries circle Palo Alto

By Donovan Garcia
Pulse Staff Reporter

Photo by Donovan Garcia

Fantastic foods and authentic cultural dishes are all within walking distance of Palo Alto College. 

Every college student has his or her own unique, crammed schedule. The typical college student’s routine is: procrastination, running around practically starving, and attempting to hang out with friends. One benefit of being a Palo Alto student is the convenience of having mom and pop-type restaurants within a one-mile radius of PAC’s campus.

Many of PAC’s students, faculty and staff have never stepped foot past the fast-food strip located west of the campus: Sonic, Domino’s, Church’s Chicken, Whataburger, Subway, Taco Cabana, and recently a new Kentucky Fried Chicken next to Taco Bell.

Approximately seven blocks from campus, Georgia’s Cafe, located at 2214 Palo Alto Rd., serves traditional Mexican dishes and everyday breakfast tacos.

“After class, I have my mind on some real Mexican food,” said Chris Rodriguez, a freshman at PAC studying Criminology.

Rodriguez loves the authentic style and hospitality of Georgia’s Cafe. He orders his usual two chicken enchilada plate with a side of rice and refried beans. With the large open area, finding a place to sit is never a problem to enjoy the food in a comfortable environment. The menu includes a wide variety of dishes, including a kid’s menu for picky eaters. 

Chico’s Bakery, located on 9155 South Zarzamora St., opens up at 6 a.m. each day and serves cookies, cakes, pastries, sweetbreads, and pan dulces. The shelves are stacked with goodies. Chico’s is the main staple for sweet treats on the South Side. Though they sell basic beverages, right next to Chico’s is Southbound Coffee, a hot pink food truck serving coffee beverages at a modest price. Opened up in April of 2019, Southbound Coffee compliments Chico’s Bakery.

Candace Rodriguez, a current student, attended Palo Alto in 1998 but stopped because of financial reasons. 

“I remember when Wendy’s was the only thing close to the Palo Alto Campus at the time,” said Rodriguez, who returned in 2017.

Now she finds herself enjoying La Torre de Jalisco, a Mexican restaurant located at 9511 Poteet Jourdanton Freeway. 

“This is a hidden gem,” said Rodriguez, who enjoys their wonderful food at a low price. In geographical distance, this is the closest authentic Mexican food restaurant that is not a fast-food chain company. La Torre sells tacos, enchiladas, tripas and refried beans. 

“PAC and its surrounding food choices are constantly expanding” says Marcos Alvarado, a sophomore at Palo Alto studying Kinesiology. 

Brenda’s Burgers on Military, Mini Tacos El Guero on South Zarzamora, Pollos al Carbon on Zarzamora, Eladio’s on Gillette, and La Sultana Pollos Asadas, a food truck on the move in the South Side region, are also ideal places to eat. Stray away from your fast food and grab a seat in one of these family-run eateries; see the difference for yourself.

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