Babita Mexicuisine: Chicken & Shrimp Elba

Happy 5 de Mayo everyone! It's time for another installment of Free Lunch, "Where You're the Reviewer."

We wanted to do our part to mark the cinco, so we took KCET newsletter subscriber Steve LaDochy to a hidden gem in San Gabriel: Babita Mexicuisine. Babita is Spanish for "little drool," or in this case the mouth watering that will occur as you anticipate Chef Roberto Berrelleza's cooking. Steve, who is Associate Professor of Geography at Cal State LA, certainly found the meal to be quite succulent.

Babita is not what you would expect from a typical Mexican restaurant, hence the chef's use of the term "Mexicuisine." The fare at this establishment is gourmet - not your standard "Mexican joint" fare. The restaurant has been lauded by the likes of Zagat and LA's own, Jonathan Gold. As a matter of fact, Babita was chosen by Mr. Gold for his third annual Gold Standard this past March.

Reviewer Steve LaDochy

Babita Mexicuisine in San Gabriel

Babita's Homemade Chips n' Salsa

Sopa Nueva (Soup of the Day): Spinach & Guava

Signature Dish: Chicken & Shrimp

Flan Moreliano

According to Steve, Babita is easy to miss and hard to forget and I concur. The only negative he found was that the lunch prices were more like dinner prices. (Don't worry about our budget: given that it was for 5 de Mayo we decided to give our participant a special treat.)

That's it for this week, but we'd really like to hear from you. What's your take? What do you think about this week's video?

Please post your comments below, and by doing so you'll become eligible to participate in Free Lunch. Also, if you have some restaurant recommendations for us, please add them to this discussion.

Keep on Lunching!

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Babita Restaurant
1823 South San Gabriel Boulevard
San Gabriel, CA 91776-3929
(626) 288-7265 ‎


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This looks nomalicious - right in my neck of the woods(ish), too! I'm going to have to add Babita to the ever-growing list of places to nom at. Great job, Steve.


Glad you enjoyed the video Glass of Win. FYI, we're always looking for restaurant recommendations on that side of town. Please leave us a comment here


omg drool! i would go just for the chips & salsa! :)