Rosco’s–El Paso, TX

Rosco’s Burger Inn
3829 Tompkins Rd.
El Paso, TX
(915) 564-9028
Rosco's

Rosco’s


The business card from Rosco’s Burger Inn a few years ago stated that it had been “serving El Paso for over 50 years,” and just about everyone who has lived in the Sun City knows about the burgers here. What makes Rosco’s different is the fact that it hasn’t changed since I first started going there (I remember the original owner who I assumed was Roscoe but it appears to have gone through at least a couple of management changes since then).

The grill

The grill

Rosco’s small business card was large enough to list the entire menu: hamburgers, cheeseburgers, hot dogs, grilled cheese, caldillo, chili bowl, meat burritos, fries, and onion rings. Most or all of these are cooked on a large grill behind the counter, and patrons associate the sound and smell of the burgers cooking with the Rosco’s experience as much as the good taste of the food. I enjoyed the good flavor of the caldillo on several visits, but the burgers are by far the most popular item.

Hamburgers on the grill

Burgers are grilled the old fashioned way

The Burgers

Cheeseburger

Cheeseburger

The major decision at Rosco’s seems to be whether you are having a burger with or without cheese. I have mostly ordered the Cheeseburger, with the grilled meat, heated bun, and fresh toppings reminding me of the typical burgers that would have been served close to a half century ago (not that I remember that far back, of course). The quality of Rosco’s burgers is something that has been lost at so many other places, especially the franchise hamburger restaurants. The meat has real flavor and everything else is fresh. Probably the buns are the one feature that could use some updating from fifty years ago, but they are good.

Burgers come with a choice of a single or double patty, and patrons can choose their own toppings. I recommend getting everything that comes with it (the cheese costs extra but I think it is a good enhancement).

Hamburger

Hamburger

Ordering the regular Hamburger, though, offers a somewhat different enjoyment experience. The flavor of the meat is more pronounced than when it is topped with cheese, and I eat so few hamburgers I really want to enjoy the flavor of the good ones (as this one is). It is safe to say, though, that both the hamburger and cheeseburger are good choices.

Hamburger and fries

Hamburger and fries

I was disappointed with the Fries on my last visit because the oil seemed to have too much of an aftertaste. I am on the fence about whether to order them again, but there are not many options for side dishes here.

Caldillo

Caldillo

Caldillo

Caldillo is one of the three Mexican style dishes here, and is the one I have ordered the most. This used to be one of my favorite caldillos in the city, but my most recent experience was of one with chile that was so spicy I could hardly eat it. I do not enjoy extremely spicy chile as much as in the past, but I can still eat it. I think the problem with the caldillo is that it is mostly liquid (it is a soup), and I usually use starches to cool down my mouth after eating hot chile. Rosco’s gives you a flour tortilla, and the caldillo contains some potato, but for me this was not enough to make it so that I enjoyed eating something this spicy. Thus the caldillo is a “maybe” for ordering in the future, even though I have really enjoyed it in the past.

Additional Comments
I have heard comments from others that they like the food but dislike the dining room, and I cannot disagree. The few tables do not accommodate all the patrons at lunch time, and the counter would be considered uncomfortable by many. As an El Paso institution, though, people do not go to Rosco’s for the atmosphere. Actually I could argue that many people do like the atmosphere that is so familiar, everyone is treated as if they are a guest at a home cooked dinner, and you can see and smell the food cooking on the grill.

I do not know of any place in town that has burgers that I consider more enjoyable.


RATING: 23

Cuisine: Hamburgers
Cost: $$
Hours: Closed Sun. & Mon. (lunch only except Fri. & Sat.)
Accessible: Yes
Smoking: No smoking
Alcohol: No

Most Recent Visit: Jun. 5, 2018
Number of Visits: 10+
Best Items: Hamburger, Cheeseburger

Special Ratings
star 5 Cheeseburger
star 5 Hamburger
star 4 Caldillo
star 4 French Fries

Los Galleros–El Paso, TX

Los Galleros
4400 N. Mesa St.
El Paso, TX
(915) 351-8130
Los Galleros

Los Galleros


Although this restaurant has been here for a number of years, it changed its name sometime around the beginning of 2018 from Los Gallegos to Los Galleros. Some comments on other web sites indicate that it has spun off from the other Los Gallegos restaurants in town, and now has independent management. The decor of the restaurant and the menu, though, indicate that it is the same restaurant as before, serves the same food, and has the same specialties such as its special menu during the Lent season.

One of the restaurant’s specialties is breakfast, and this is the reason I made my first visit after the name change. They had a large breakfast buffet which included scrambled eggs and the normal breakfast items. I did not spot Mexican dishes in the buffet, although it may be possible that they will serve them on request (I did not ask about this). I also noticed that tables were served chips and salsa as part of the meal.

Breakfast Menu Items

Huevos rancheros

Huevos rancheros

I ordered Huevos Rancheros from the menu, meaning that I could not get the “all you can eat” special from the buffet but this meal was very filling and extremely satisfying. In addition to beans and hash browns, it had an excellent flour tortilla. This was one of the three or four breakfast specials they had, meaning that it was a very good price (mine was $3.99).

I thought the huevos rancheros were excellent–they had a very good flavor and were spicy without exceeding the spice level that I thought was appropriate for this dish.

The Hash Browns were very good (especially when compared to the ones at New Clock which I thought were greasy).

The Beans were excellent and not greasy.

A glass of Orange Juice I ordered at an extra charge was the only disappointing part of the meal, and something I would probably skip in the future (I believe they said you could order horchata for breakfast along with the standard drinks such as coffee, etc.).

Lent Specials
I happened to go on a Friday during Lent at the old Los Gallegos and discovered that this is one of the few places with an authentic comida de cuaresma (Lent special). I tried the Pescado Veracruzano (pollack with a tomato sauce, peppers, green olives, etc.) which was actually on the menu all the time. Although the fish was not very good quality the preparation was excellent, and I enjoyed the sauce and the side dishes including good old fashioned french fries. What made the Lent dinner unique were the lentejas (lentil soup) that was one of the best I’ve ever had and the capirotada (bread pudding) for dessert. I noticed a sign at the new Los Galleros that they still have Lent specials and it seems that this is still one of their specialties.

Regular Menu
I had a problem with some of the regular menu items at Los Gallegos, though (and hopefully this may be one area where the new “independent” restaurant may be different). For instance, the Chicken Mole had a pretty decent mole sauce, but the chicken meat was so tough you needed a knife to cut it.

Tortilla Soup was served in a huge quantity such that the large bowl (for about $3) was enough for a meal at Los Gallegos. However the tortilla strips begin to disintegrate so that it became a soggy mess (another example of a dish which I hope is now improved at the new Los Galleros).

Overall Comments
Having a breakfast experience at Los Galleros may not be enough to give me a full picture of the overall food quality at the restaurant. However, it was very encouraging and much better than the meals I had before at Los Gallegos. This, along with the good experiences I had at Los Gallegos (such as the Lent meals) makes me think that the owners had a purpose in changing the name and that they have retained the good features of the old restaurant while adding some new ones that customers will enjoy.


RATING: 23

Cuisine: Mexican Durango
Cost: $
Smoking: No smoking
Special Features: Has Buffet

Most Recent Visit: Jun. 4, 2018
Number of Visits: 6
Best Items: Huevos Rancheros, Comida de Cuaresma (Lent Specials)

 

Mexican Food Details

Chile Index: chile 4

 

Special Ratings
star 5 Huevos Rancheros
star 5 Hash Browns
star 5 Beans
star 5 Flour Tortilla
star 5 Salsa
star 5 Pico de Gallo