Is Los Comales overhyped? Not if you enjoy good service and drinking the best horchata in town


Photo by Kary Hernandez

An employee steps back from the grill at Los Comales on Oct. 12, 2022.

By Kary Hernandez, Reporter

Los Comales, 200 S. Neltnor Blvd #400, West Chicago 60185 (630.206.8009). Tacos $2.65-$3;   Appetizers $2.42-$9.88; Dessert $3.50-$3.60; Drinks $1.99-$2.50.



If you have not tried Los Comales’ location in beloved West Chicago, here are my thoughts so you will not have to go out. Or maybe you will, if you want quality Mexican food at a great price.

Los Comales restaurant opened in 1973. Originally located in the Little Village neighborhood, the restaurant was founded by Camerino Gonzalez, who aspired to have a better life in the United States. Gonzalez’s aspiration led to his need to give back to the Mexican community through food, and hence Los Comales was born. 

Through the prime years of Los Comales, Gonzalez worked the grill to serve authentic and fresh food. With his great passion to give back to his community, by 1980, Los Comales began to expand through the Chicago area, Chicago Suburbs, and Milwaukee. 

The walls at the restaurant provide a yellow background for the Mexican art on display. (Photo by Kary Hernandez)

It was a rainy Sunday afternoon when my family decided to dine in at Los Comales. My mom and siblings arrived before I did because I was working, so I did not share their experience of waiting in line for a table. Once I sat down, however, the waitresses took note and immediately assisted me. 

Once I was seated, I took into consideration the environment. The ambiance was calming because there was minimal background music (specifically banda and corrido) and other conversation. In every corner in Los Comales, they have decorated their restaurant with various types of Mexican art/crafts, which include the Mexican flag, Mayan calendar, Papel Picado, and sombreros. 

While dining-in, it must be said the waitresses provided excellent service. They were pleasant, friendly, and seemed to care if our food had arrived or not. Every now and then, they would ask if we needed anything or if an entree was missing. 

Whenever we needed our drink refilled, they would let us know if there would be an extra charge or not – specific to the drink. As such, there were no surprises on the bill.

Chips and salsa are served before the entrees arrive. (Photo by Kary Hernandez)

Be warned, however: if you decide to dine in with your family, there is minimal space at the West Chicago location. If seated in the middle of the restaurant, you will find there is a lack of space to move and a lack of privacy – meaning you will be able to hear others’ conversation and vice versa. 

Upon ordering, it did not take long to receive my food. I ordered three tacos of beef tongue with everything, as well as a medium horchata drink. The horchata was – by far – the best I have ever had. It featured a good mixture of rice and cinnamon, was blended well and tasted exactly how a horchata should. I have tried horchatas from other restaurants, and they are not the same: they either have a lot of rice and minimal cinnamon, or a lot of cinnamon and a lack of rice. However, Los Comales knows how to make a stellar horchata.

When my food arrived, it was neatly presented with three slices of limes and parchment paper underneath the tacos to soak up the grease. It looked enticing, and yet once I took a bite, I was disappointed. The taco felt warm, and the tortilla felt and looked raw. It seemed as though the tortilla needed additional cooking time. There were more onions on the taco than cilantro, and the beef tongue looked a little weird.  I usually expect my beef tongue taco to be cut in small cubed shaped and properly composed but what I got was a smushed cubed-shaped beef tongue with a bland flavor, which did not give me the appetite to eat it.

Still, if you enjoy eating tacos, I would recommend this place as a fast place to eat and then leave. The ambiance is lacking, and the food, as of lately, is hit or miss. Nonetheless, the customer service is great.