Tue, May 21

More Village-style dining dollar sense

Frequent Maria’s patrons Cassie and Fred Shaylor

Frequent Maria’s patrons Cassie and Fred Shaylor

Did you receive Markeplace Café's "brown bag it" promotion in the mail? Wasn't that cute?

We followed up by ordering a "to-go" grilled cheese sandwich with homemade chips and a chocolate chip cookie, all for 99 cents. It was the real deal!

Many other Villagers were doing the same. Jere and Bob Urista looked so smart sitting in a booth with glasses of Chardonnay and their bag lunches-Caesar salad for one, grilled cheese for the other- served on china yet!

Score one for MPC!

Score another for Maria's Restaurant and Cantina in Castle Rock Plaza. Maria's had been running a coupon ad so we checked it out for Jeff's midweek Mexican food fix.

Olga, manager and bartender for the evening, started us out with good margaritas, using one of the 30 featured tequilas!

Colorful seasoned chips and fresh salsa were gratis. We were surprised to see steak, pasta and seafood on the menu as well as traditional Mexican combination plates. Jeff's chose Chicken Tortilla Soup followed by Chipotle Ribs. Suzie opted for Posole, then Snapper Vera Cruz (grilled with red and green pepper, tomato and olives.)

Both entrees were accompanied by freshly steamed zucchini. The wonderful soups were a meal in themselves and what we could not eat of the delicious entrees made for another meal at home.

In an adjoining booth sat Arizona Ranger Fred Shaylor and his daughter Cassie, frequent patrons of the restaurant, exclaiming over their Enchiladas and Chile Rellenos.

And yet at another table were visitors from Texas raving over Rattlesnake (deep-fried strips) and Fried Nopalitos (breaded cactus.) Maria's is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Olga said the lunch menu is mainly sandwiches, including hamburgers. There is usually a special each night, with Friday's being Fish and Chips. Call 284-3739 for further information.

We would like to make a correction to our last article. The Sommelier at A'Roma is Eric Beer, not Rick Beer. We love his byline "Beer loves wine!"

Many thanks to the patrons and wait staffs of Marketplace Cafe and Maria's Restaurant and Cantina.

Health and happiness to our readers.