Cheap Eats 2010: Guajillo

100 places that offer great food at low prices.

Why go: This regional Mexican kitchen in the Courthouse neighborhood pays attention to the little things: Many plates are garnished with citrus-infused beets, blue corn is used for the rustic quesadillas, and the ginger lemonade tastes fresh-squeezed.

What to get: Fried sweet plantains with sour cream and black beans; shrimp ceviche; maritas de puerco, a pork dish that recalls fried chicken; quesadillas pressed with huitlacoche, an earthy corn fungus that tastes much better than it sounds; carnitas with garlic and onion; grilled shrimp mexicali; pork tacos; chicken mole; churros drizzled with caramel.

Best for: Pigging out. From bottomless baskets of chips and warm salsa to extra-large desserts, it’s tough to walk away hungry.

Insider tip: Located in the same shopping strip as Pho 75 and Ray’s Hell-Burger, this is a low-key alternative when those places are too crowded.

>> See all 2010 Cheap Eats restaurants here  

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.