Porfirio’s Mexican Restaurant – Barboursville, WV
You know how some restaurants barely acknowledge your existence and their beer is way overpriced? And how you feel like you got ripped off when you leave and wonder why you ever gave them another chance ‘cause you didn’t like it last time, either???
Porfirio’s is NOT one of those restaurants.
If there is one thing you can hang your hat on, it’s that I love Mexican food. I wear Ron out on the stuff. I could eat it every day. I don’t think I have ever met a Mexican Restaurant that I did not like. (I know I smacked Cozumel on the wrist for their taco salad, but I swear their other food is great.) Well, Ron has only himself to blame for getting me hooked on Porfirio’s.
When we met three years ago, I was a die-hard Mi Pueblito fan and he had the audacity to take me to a different Mexican joint. It was my first-ever visit to Porfirio’s. The first of about 132 visits and counting. My initial impression was that it was kind of a hole-in-the-wall. The furniture was a bit dated and it wasn’t waving it’s arms saying “eat tacos here!” with a fancy, attention-grabbing façade. You almost have to be looking for it, between the Outback and Johnny’s Pizza on route 60 near the Barboursville Mall.
One of the best salsas in the greater Charleston-Huntington area will arrive at your table with the customary basket of chips. The chips are always fresh, crispy and a little thicker than you might expect. The salsa is fresh and tomato-y and a bit spicy with a smooth texture.
They have great beer prices. I can get Michelob Ultra for $2.50 a bottle every day, but now there is a deal (also available every day) for a bucket of 5 domestic bottles priced at $10. $2 per beer isn’t too shabby these days. And they serve it ice cold. Ahhhhh….. Ron always gets the tall draft beer which I refer to as the “2-liter of beer”. Seriously, the mug is so big and so heavy, it takes 2 hands for me to pick it up. It almost looks like you have a personal pitcher to drink out of. The only choice you have is Bud Light, but if that suits you, you can get the giant-sized frosted mug for only $3.00.
My favorite dish at Porfirio’s is the chimichanga. And just so I wouldn’t stress out our familiar waiter, I decided to go with it again today. I always order the lunch chimi (meaning there is only one instead of two with the dinner portion), chicken, fried, no sour cream and I only get rice on the side. But to mix things up, today I added a chile rellano!
Our bucket ‘o beer arrived and we munched on some chips. I pile so much of that yummy salsa (low-carb) on top of tiny pieces of chips (lotsa carbs) that I always run out. “More salsa, por favor.” My chimi looked as beautiful as ever but the chile relleno was not what I expected.
The chimichanga was filled with white meat chicken, wrapped in a flour tortilla that was deep-fried and smothered in the white cheese sauce. Shredded lettuce and guacamole adorned the top. A side of rice, perfectly cooked with gentle seasoning, sat beside. This is a great value for $4.75. If I am particularly hungry, I add an a la carte item to make my own combination dinner, so-to-speak, as I did today.
The chile relleno was described in the menu as: ground beef and cheese on top a bell pepper strip. The bell pepper strip turned out to be a few thin strips of green pepper, not a big slice of pepper that I expected given the description. The ground beef was the same beef that comes in the tacos, which I love and the cheese sauce is awesome on anything, I think. (I got the kind of chile relleno I expected at La Carretta in Kanawha City – and that day, the pepper was very spicy. I greatly enjoyed the self-inflicted inferno in my mouth.) This is a great low-carb addition to my meal for $2.25.
After my two and a half beers and my meal, I was full and happy. But the best thing about coming here is that Porfirio always talks to the customers when he isn’t in the kitchen preparing the meals. He truly cares about his patrons. He is always warm and friendly to my little girls when they are with me, and when they aren’t, he asks about them. We usually have Tom as our server and he not only recognizes us, but he knows what we always order. There is definitely something to be said about that.
If I have a craving for Mexican and Ron’s not that into it, all I have to do is remind him what a great value Porfirio’s is and I can twist his arm (almost) every time. You can get great food, great prices and excellent service at this unsuspecting jewel on Route 60. Don’t eat at the mall – visit Porfirio’s instead. FOUR FORKS.
This is why I went to school to be an Engineer and not a journalist. I hate having these stinking deadlines…. YOU NEED TO WRITE BEFORE YOU FORGET!! is what I’m told.
So Be It…
Porfirio’s… Well for starters, I’m ashamed I know Susan. I busted her cherry on this joint, and she only gives it 4 Forks??? What gives???
FIVE FORKS -
I do not give these out lightly, matter of fact I think this is only my second 5 Forker. But this place gets 5 (five) Forks! End of Discussion.
I’ve been coming here for probably just shy of eight years. I have always been amazed at the size of the beer with the very nice price of the food. If Porfirio’s is making money, then all the other places around – Charleston, Huntington, Elkview, Ashland, Pinch, Pratt, and Jefferson… well then all these places are STEALING MONEY!!!.
Free Chips and Salsa – Susan’s correct – this salsa is great. Chips, they may be Tostito’s Gold quality, if not, they’re not far from it. (yes that’s my hilljack tostito chip requirement – must meet Tostito’s quality).
Not only do you get awesome chips, Porfirio – the Porfirio gets to know you. Susan alluded to it. But he gives her girls quarters to put in the bouncy ball and tattoo machines… has given them ice cream, etc. The man wants to succeed…
I FEEL AT HOME HERE… and it seems Porfirio wants you to feel that way. This visit was on a Sunday and they had all four televisions tuned to “Wipeout”. All the customers were watching it and laughing at the same time. It felt like I was eating in my living room at home.
I’ve never had a bad meal here. Yeah I’ve had meals I didn’t care for, but that’s because I’m out to try everything on the menu. I got the Chile Colorado for $7.50. It is pork tips with sauce, tortillas, rice, beans and all the fixin’s. This was not one of my favorites, but it was still good. There may only be two or three things left on the menu I haven’t tried yet.
Personally I would stick with any of the Burritos… as I’ve never had a bad one. The other stuff – well sometimes I find something that I think is awesome, and sometimes, I’m like “why did you let me get this? Just give me the Jumbo Burrito.” - And TOM the waiter KNOWS THIS. There has been like two times that I’ve ordered something and he’s like “No Jumbo Burrito?”.
Porofirio’s knows their customers.
Great Mexican Served Here… 5 Forks… To Hell with Susan.
3677 Us Route 60 E
Barboursville, WV 25504