By: Christie Monturo
This past weekend I went out in search for a late breakfast and stumbled upon a small Mexican restaurant called Los Altenos. The front porch was blocked off by black railing resembling prison bars an entrance in the middle. I felt a little wary of walking in, but when I opened the front door I was greeted with the aroma of fresh tortillas and salsa billowing in the air. I ordered a breakfast burrito from the young girl at the register, and asked to use the restroom. The bathroom was all the way in the back, behind the kitchen. The place seemed like a hole-in-the-wall kind of place, but I wasn’t worried because usually those types of eateries prove to be more authentic than commercial chains.
I sat down for about ten minutes before an elderly Mexican man brought my food out on a plate with a smile on his face. As I ate, I looked around and noticed just how much Mexican pride the restaurant had. The walls were covered from top to bottom with trinkets and photographs. Two huge black and white photographs of a group of people in a bar mirrored each other on opposite walls. The old televisions hanging from the walls were blaring Spanish-speaking shows. The culture emanated from every inch of Los Altenos. I felt in touch with the atmosphere and it made me forget I was still inFlagstaff. A place that can take you far away from your preconceived notions about this town is certainly worth visiting.