Welcome back to another fun filled post on Food And Such Things. This time around, it's a review of a cool little place located across the street from the Los Cerritos Center. Elbows Mac n' Cheese is the name, and servin' up bangin' macaroni and cheese is their game. So, just how good is their game? You are about to find out.
Elbows is located in the Cerritos Promenade. It's right next to a Starbucks, and it's got a lot of competition food wise in a small area. There are lots of places to eat just in the promenade, not to mention a mall across the street with tons of places to eat. So, why even mention that? Because this place is doing something different. To open a restaurant that specializes in mac n' cheese is risky. To open a restaurant based around an "All American" food in a culturally diverse city like Cerritos is almost insane. But, through all the risk and craziness, stands a unique and fun eatery.
One of the cool things about mac n' cheese is that the two main ingredients are things that most people can get down with. I think most people like pasta in one form or another, and cheese is right up there in that same category. From there, all you have to do is tinker with the extra ingredients to please the masses.
This recent venture to Elbows was my second trip there. My first time visiting, I ordered an Indian spiced mac n' cheese, and it was really good. Bold flavors and a healthy amount of heat. Since that was a while back, I'm not get caught up with that right now.
Like I said earlier, mac n' cheese is their business.They do have some appetizers and salads, but mac n' cheese is really why you are going there. You can go with a pre-set mac n' cheese, like a Hamburger Mac or Lobster Mac, or build your own with a large list of ingredients to choose from. This time around, I chose the Caprese Mac. As you can guess, it had the components of a caprese salad. Except for the balsamic.
I ordered the regular size, and let me say that it is a good size to go with. While the picture above is pretty close, it's enough to fill you up. I think a large would be good to split with someone.
One the best parts of this dish was the topping. It was a little crispy, a little chewy, lots of cheesy, and really fucking good. The bread crumbs gave it a nice texture contrast to the softness of the cheese and pasta.
The sauce was a little more subtle than I expected. I know mozzarella isn't normally a bold cheese, but, with the addition of parmesan, I thought it would be a bit more forthcoming. But, it still was a good sauce. Each forkful I lifted up would stretch like a shot in a commercial.
In my opinion, not having the balsamic element does effect this dish. I think the acidity from vinegar would bring some of that richness from the cheeses down a notch. But, that's just my two cents.
Overall, it's not bad if you are looking for something without meat. As you can see, I cleaned my plate.
That's about it for this one. If you are ever in that area, check this place out.
Elbows Mac n' Cheese
11405 South Street, Cerritos, CA, 90703
Sun - Wed: 11:00am to 9:00pm
Thurs - Sat: 11:00am - 10:00pm
Now I'm going to leave you with a picture of a near-by fountain at the promenade. Why? Cuz it looks purtty! Just like your mouth. :)