Best Salsa - 2006
"This is spicy," the waitress says, indicating the swarthier of the two bowls of salsa she places on a booth table along with a basket of unsalted corn chips. First, then, the milder salsa. It's a cool mash of tomatoes and onions, with a distinct but not overpowering blast of cilantro along for the ride. Something else too -- maybe basil stirred into the sex-red condiment. The second salsa is earthier in color, with visible jalapeno slices and seeds scattered within. It has a curious sweetness that tingles on the tip of the tongue before giving way to a rush of heat that dashes back in the mouth and up the sinuses like sparks up a chimney. Before the stomach fills with these sauces, the lunch special arrives. It's a $6 chicken burrito surrounded by beans and rice and contains nothing more than chicken meat. The only flavoring agent in sight is the orange cheese piled on and around it. Luckily, an ordinary fork stands ready to act as a ladle. Salsas to the rescue!