#85 - Sabor Latin Bar & Grill, Wichita, KS

The Saturday morning of the Big 12 tourney I woke up, ran 6 miles, and then headed home.  Probably not the best idea, because my legs were super sore from sitting in the car for so long and I was exhausted after a couple of hours.  But I timed it out perfectly to hit Wichita about lunchtime.  I had gone on TripAdvisor to look for a place to eat, and came across Sabor Latin Bar & Grill.  It's right in Old Town Wichita, an area with a Warren theatre and lots of other restaurants and shops.  It was ranked in the top 5 restaurants in Wichita, so I decided to try it out.

I arrived well after the lunch rush, but there were still a few tables of people there.  The restaurant looks kind of industrial, with a full bar near the entrance, about 20 tables inside, and a small outdoor patio with about 10 tables.  The kitchen isn't fully open, but you can still see and hear them cooking and talking in the back, particularly if you're seated close to the kitchen as I was.

There was only one server working almost the whole time I was there.  I understand it was after the lunch rush, but it was still way too much for one person.  It took quite a while for me to be served, although he did come over and tell me he would be with me as fast as he could after I was seated.  It's not his fault, but it detracted from the experience.  And then I heard the manager/owner in the kitchen arguing with one of the cooks about how he was slicing the meat...he wasn't doing it against the grain, so it was tough, but he didn't want to hear it.  There was a little bit of a language barrier because the chef was Hispanic, and had kind of broken English, so another chef had to help translate some of it.  So that didn't help things either.  From their argument I really thought the chef was going to walk out.  Thankfully the fight didn't last too long.

As usual, I was having a hard time deciding what to eat.  I started with the plantanures
Crispy Plantain Chips | Served with Chimichurri and Avocado Crema
These chips were so good!  Growing up my mom made plaintains all the time.  She used to bake them, but they were way too mushy for me to eat so she would also fry them for me.  But when she did it was thick cut slices.  These were very thinly cut, crisp, not greasy, and freshly cooked.  The avocado crema was pretty good, but I really liked the chimichurri.  It had a lot of garlic, so once again it's a good thing I wasn't going to be kissing anyone.  The down side to the long wait for my meal was that I kept eating the chips.  But I finally forced myself to stop, and asked the waiter to bag the rest so I could take them home.

For my main dish I went with the sandwich de vegetariano with a side of black bean frito
Sauteed Mushroom Blend, Roasted Red Bell Pepper | Manchego & Mozzarella Cheese |
 | Avocado | Spinach | Chimichurri | Mayo
I don't normally order veggie sandwiches, but after the funtivities of the Big 12, I felt like I needed something healthy.  Plus it sounded delish.  Plus it was on ciabatta bread.  Plus when I asked the server he said it was awesome.  And he was right.  The sandwich was huge, but really really good.  The chimichurri is very oily and there was too much on the bread so when I picked it up, some of the middle fell out.  But I honestly didn't even realize that it came with the chimichurri until I bit into it.  So next time I would get it on the side. That's my only complaint about the sandwich. The black beans were absolutely delicious.  It's smashed beans sautéed with onions, topped with sour cream and cilantro.  The beans aren't spicy at all, but the sour cream adds a nice cool texture and taste to the dish.

I continued munching on the plaintains on my drive home, and had enough left when I got there to eat a few later that night.  Then I got tired of the garlic smell and had to throw rest of the sauce away.

Will I go back?  Yes of course!  The server issue had to be a very rare occurrence, otherwise the restaurant wouldn't get such good reviews and a high rating.  Plus, there's other menu items that I want to try.  But regardless, I will always start with the plantanures.