The final word on Tex-Mex? An interview with Guillermo Bubba Rodriguez

Above: Pozoles at Rosario’s in San Antonio.

From the Oxford English Dictionary, online edition:

    Tex-Mex adj. Designating the Texan variety of something Mexican; also occas., of or pertaining to both Texas and Mexico.

    1949 Time 14 Feb. 38/1 Fluent in Texmex Spanish, he had been one of the most promising rodeo riders around Tucson, Ariz… The half English, half Spanish patois of the U.S.-Mexican border region. 1973 News (Mexico City) (Vistas Suppl.) 22 July 7 It is a mistake to come to Mexico and not try the local cuisine. It is not the Tex-Mex cooking that one is used to getting in the United States. 1976 M. MACHLIN Pipeline xx. 246 The voice of Miss Martinez, one of Wilbur’s gestures toward Tex-Mex integration, came softly over the intercom. 1977 Time Out 28 Jan.-3 Feb. 8/2 Cooder’s current concern is the music of Southern Texas, the ‘Tex-Mex’ style.

Above: Griselda’s Tacos Callejeros (stuffed with chicken) at Rosario’s.

Ask anyone who follows the food and wine blogosphere: there’s just no avoiding the habanero-fired debate over the definition of “Tex-Mex” cuisine. Being a Southern Californian myself and with only a year in Texas under my belt, I felt obliged to consult with one of the field’s greatest experts and authorities, Guillermo “Bubba” Rodriquez. Here’s what he wrote me.

    If you don’t have fajitas, YOU’RE OUT.

    If you don’t have queso, YOU’RE OUT.

    If you have to ask what queso is, YOU’RE OUT.

Above: A “wet” carne asada burrito at Chuys in Austin.

    If you don’t white AND yellow cheese grated on the enchiladas, YOU’RE OUT.

    If you don’t have charro beans option, YOU’RE OUT.

    If your top-shelf Margarita is not served with Cuervo Gold, YOU’RE OUT.

    If the beef in your chili con carne is not ground, YOU’RE OUT.

Above: Huevos motuleños at Curra’s Grill in Austin.

    If your picante sauce was made in New York City, YOU’RE OUT.

    If you have ceviche on your menu, YOU’RE OUT.

    Actually, if you have any fish on your menu, YOU’RE OUT.

    If you don’t know how to make a Mexican Martini, YOU’RE OUT.

In other news…

Hook ’em Horns! Texas squares off with Oklahoma today. As our good friend Melvin Croaker likes to say, what do Oklahoma and marijuana have in common? They both get smoked in a bowl.

Thanks for reading! Have a great weekend ya’ll!

2 thoughts on “The final word on Tex-Mex? An interview with Guillermo Bubba Rodriguez

  1. i have an edit: ‘if you think queso simply means cheese, you’re out.’

    :)

    we love our tex-mex, don’t we 2B! those griselda tacos were taken over the top by the PERFECTLY chewy texture of the corn tortillas. YUM

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