Restaurant Review: Dos Hermanos at The North Market
Fifteen years ago, the North Market was The Small Business Incubator for local projects. It provided a home for eateries (and shops) to serve customers, without the high start-up costs associated with a stand-alone, brick-and-mortar operation.
Times have changed. Food trucks and pop-up events are typically the first things that come to mind, when the subject of start-up eateries arises. While still home to many fledgling businesses, the market is also developing as an attractive satellite outlet for successful local operations such as Katzinger’s and Pistacia Vera.
Dos Hermanos bridges a gap of sorts. It started as a food truck, and now it’s spread its wings as a North Market vender. In some sense, it’s stepped up in the world. Dos Hermanos now has a spot with a fixed location and hours, and for eaters: that’s a big win.
Like any North Market operation, the new place has counter service with a remarkably quick turnaround between ordering and receiving the food. Even in a line that looks long during a busy lunch hour, the prep team delivers like lightening, so the biggest delay will be waiting for indecisive customers (and that was not long at all, given the streamlined menu and the helpfully clear cashier).
So, there are two ways to do this. You can customize tacos or a burrito, or you can go for the entree platters.
IF you’re building Tacos (3 for $8), you’ll choose a style and a meat. The Dos Hermanos style has cheese, lettuce, cilantro and pico de gallo; the Mexican Street style has cilantro, roasted jalapeño and lime. Either style is good, it’s the meat that truly determines the experience; consider this an enthusiastic endorsement for the barbacoa. It is seasoned and soft in big meaty chunks; perfect in every way.
That’s not to say that the chicken is bad. It’s lean, and it works perfectly in something like the Chicken Enchiladas ($12), smothered in poblano sauce. Shreds of poultry are packed inside tortillas, and the soaking sauce ties all the elements together. On the side are refried beans and rice — they’re served with every entree platter. The duo is par for the culinary course, which is good for variety and a palate cleanse, but not worth a whole bunch of stomach space.
The Market Burrito ($11) is an entree that showcases the house carnitas (chunky shredded pork). A big flour tortilla is stuffed with refried beans, sautéed peppers and the soft pork. The absence of trendy rice filling in the burrito was most appreciated; the pork was, however, the least favorite meat. It just doesn’t sing like the beef, and it’s not as likable as the chicken.
Veg-heads should go straight for a Chile Relleno ($13). A roasted poblano is stuffed full of cheese and coated in an almost-comforting fried breading. At the end of the day, it’s hard to beat anything oozing with melted cheese, especially topped with more cheese and salsa. In fact, while you can get the pepper stuffed with chicken instead, you’ll wish you’d chosen cheese.
You can find Dos Hermanos at The North Market with its host of other vendors at 59 Spruce Street.
For more information, visit www.northmarket.com.
All photos by Lillian Dent. Photos are taken at a different time than review, so discrepancies between photos and review may occur.