Lately I’ve felt especially frustrated by the lack of good restaurants in town. And just when I felt all hope was lost, a humble family run authentic Mexican restaurant opens up and all is well for now. Welik is exactly the kind of place us locals long for, built out of a passion for food, using fresh ingredients, and possessing a sense of humility that comes from a restaurant that has the overall feeling of family.
Welik took over the Hundred Islands Grill spot, and is owned by Adriana and Ivan, two people that have worked in the food industry for years, and have always wanted to own their own restaurant. With their oldest son currently studying at UCLA, and a desire to finally go for it and open up a spot of their own, the timing was right, and as of two weeks ago they are open and serving.
The first thing I noticed was that in addition to chips and salsa, they also bring beans to snack on while looking at the menu. The second thing I noticed was tableside guacamole on the menu. It was everything I had hoped for an more. Prepared perfectly with just the right amount of seasoning and spice, it had been a long time since I have had tableside guacamole in town.
Everything is made fresh, using recipes that have been passed down through the generations, authentic family recipes that are evident in the wonderful pipian dish pictured below. They have a couple of different moles, and each one is made in house. Mole is not easy to make, and it is time consuming, but having tried the pipian and the green mole today, I feel comfortable saying this is some of the best mole in SCV. Great stuff.
The sopes are expertly formed from scratch, using fresh masa, and topped with your choice of meat. These were the appetizer size but still came with rice and beans. Fantastic.
On special today was the molcajete, which is one of my favorite dishes to order whenever it is available at restaurants I frequent. Composed of chicken steak, cactus, cheese, and shrimp, the flavors of this molcajete were spot on, and paired with a side of tortillas? I highly recommend it.
Our chocoflan was a sweet end to a great meal. The restaurant is nothing fancy, but the passion is evident. The food is the standout here, but so is the feeling that these are small business owners pursuing their dream. And lucky for SCV, they are doing it well. I urge everyone to go try Welik this weekend. Try some of the more regional dishes if you are craving authentic Mexican flavors.
Welik is located at 26238 Bouquet Canyon Road. The shopping center isn’t the easiest to navigate, but it will be well worth it.