There used to be a Mexican restaurant in San Francisco called "Mom is Cooking". Hearing that name, can't you just picture someone's mother standing over a stove somewhere, smiling and lovingly stirring a pot? Mom is Cooking is long gone, but in the Outer Mission another mom is cooking. Irma is cooking. I have hesitated to write a review of Pastores because I always order the same thing every time I go. Enchiladas. Sometimes they come with a spicy red chile sauce, other times with her mole. All her sauces are homemade and definitely made with love.
Not only does Irma cook, but she usually comes over to your table to take your order, chat with you and let you know what the specialties are that day. It's not so much a list of specials, it's more like what she has on the stove. Perhaps it's the way she treats her customers to an agua fresca or a not-on-the-menu dessert that makes it feel all the more like home. Being made to feel welcome is one of the key ingredients to a great meal, and you can't feel more appreciated than when you eat at Pastores.
In addition to her amazing enchiladas, breakfast items are another specialty here and for around $6 you get a big plate of food and a cup of coffee. The huevos rancheros and the chilaquiles are particularly good but I only know that from taking a bite from someone else's plate. The one time I didn't order the enchiladas I couldn't decide between the chicken with peppers or the chicken with onions and so Irma made me a combination of both on one plate. Who else other than a mom would do something like that?
3486 Mission St @ Cortland
Open Monday - Saturday 7 a.m. - 9 p.m. Sunday 7 p.m. - 7 p.m.