La Alameda Mexican Restaurant

11 Sep 2011
Average Cost ($8-$14)
West Huntsville
3 out of 5

Melanie’s Take

If you’re a dedicated Chain of Foods reader, you know that I’m not a big fan of buffets, so you can understand my trepidation when walking into a buffet of Mexican foods. What can be less appealing than a mass of customers trolling through the refried beans and guacamole? When we went to La Alameda, I was pleasantly surprised to see the remedy for this unappetizing site: a buffet with service! Instead of customers serving themselves, there were two attendants behind the glass-protected buffet who served us at our request. It was also handy because they could explain what the dishes were instead of us peering at unnamed masses of cheese and red sauce. The buffet was full of items that on their own or in combination could create any Mexican dish. Burritos, enchiladas, chimichangas, mexican casserole, cheese dip, and fajita components stocked the buffet. I found all of the items to be tasty, but particularly loved the mexican casserole. It was a comprised of tortillas, shredded chicken, red sauce, and cheese. The seasoning was spot on, creating the only dish that demanded a return trip to the buffet even when otherwise stuffed. If you can make it to dessert, try the sopapillas on the buffet. They are delicately fried flour tortillas sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar and drizzled with honey. Yum! We enjoyed our visit to La Alameda. The staff was attentive, the decor was fun and fresh, and the value was great with the dinner buffet priced at $8.50. If you’re in the mood to try a good assortment of Mexican dishes, give them a try.

Shane’s Take

Usually, Mexican buffets feature bland items built on tortillas, beans, meat, and cheese. You know how it is: you walk in with some work colleagues, take a look at the food, and then say “Eh, it looks pretty good” while thinking “This is gonna be a long afternoon”. Fortunately, La Alameda flanks the standard enchiladas and burritos with chile rellenos, chimichangas, fajitas, and tamales. I was impressed and, although I have little Mexican buffet experience, I feel confident that their selection exceeds that of a typical Mexican buffet. It also helped that the food tasted good. We’re not talking Paul Prudhomme here, but it wasn’t bad at all. More impressive was the service. Most buffets are a free-for-all, but at La Alameda each person is served cafeteria style: You walk up to the buffet, survey the landscape, and start telling the lady what you want. I’d not been to a buffet like that before, but I liked it: it really cut down on the “Is that a booger?” thoughts that usually accompany trips to the buffet. Plus, the night we were there a friendly grandma-aged lady was serving food. She didn’t hesitate to fill us up with lots of cheese dip or to talk with blinking eyes to my sister-in-law’s boyfriend and me. Inside La AlamedaDespite the nice selection and kind service, La Alameda has its shortcomings. The rustic atmosphere is okay but less than spectacular. For example, the exposed wood trusswork is interesting, but the some of the TVs weren’t working and our table was one of those unfortunate laminated things you sit at in elementary school. Also, the buffet was not as gross as other buffets, but it still had a strong gut-busting quality about it—it’s hard to eat at a place like La Alameda without feeling guilty or gluttonous or both. Likewise, at about $10 per person, the price is compelling, but most of the time I’d choose another place for the same price.
All that being said, Melanie and I occasionally sacrifice quality for cost (hello Taco Bell!) or quantity (hello Chinese buffets!). Before our trip to La Alameda, I expected we’d get a lot of food and just a little quality. Fortunately, my expectations were exceeded and we got lots of pretty good food. If you’re hungry and wanna get down with a lot of Mexican food, I recommend La Alameda.
Other thoughts:
  • Irony of the day: a buffet in a barn-shaped building.
  • La Alameda does a better job keeping its buffet fresh than other buffets.
  • This is the kind of place you go when you feel like slumming it. Throw on some old jeans and a worn out shirt and do it!
  • They have all-you-can-eat cheese dip on the buffet!
La Alameda Mexican Restaurant on Urbanspoon

2 Responses

  1. Chelsea Green

    I LOVE this place! Me and my boyfriend go here all the time for lunch because it’s fairly close to our work. Mmmm, I could eat those cheese quesadillas all day.

  2. Shane & Melanie

    Chelsea…being a cheese lover, I too could eat the cheese dip, enchiladas, and quesadillas en masse.

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