La Michoacana Meat Market offers taste from south of the border

Jessica  Rodrigo By Jessica Rodrigo

Aug. 24, 2013 at 3:24 a.m.

Marcus Andrade, 49, of Victoria, spoons mole sauce into small containers behind the meat counter of La Michoacana Meat Market.

Marcus Andrade, 49, of Victoria, spoons mole sauce into small containers behind the meat counter of La Michoacana Meat Market.   Sarah Ganzhorn for The Victoria Advocate

La Michoacana Meat Market is a Victoria County staple for those looking for products that come from south of the border.

The Mexican meat market has two locations in Victoria and is best known for its specialty cuts of meat and variety of fresh produce.

La Michoacana manager Elias Ibarra has worked with the Houston-based company for 11 years, including four years in Victoria.

While in Victoria, he opened the 1,800-square-foot Lone Tree Road store and recently opened a much larger second location on North Laurent Street.

The newest meat market location joins the more than 100 stores in Texas, including one in Oklahoma.

"The necessities of the people have grown more, so we opened another location to provide better range and service," he said.

The produce area is one of the first areas to greet customers as they step through the front doors. Stacked in colorful piles, tomatoes, heads of lettuce and oranges await to be picked up, weighed and judged before being purchased and taken home to make family meals.

The produce department also offers popular Mexican ingredients such as fresh guavas, chayote squash and nopales, young pads from prickly pear cactus plants.

Alyce Hartman, 64, of Victoria, buys most of her produce at the La Michoacana on North Laurent Street because of the freshness and price comparison to other stores in the area. She said she makes salads often, and the produce section there has a lot to offer.

"I have found cheaper produce here, and the people are friendly," she said as she checked the heads of lettuce. "I buy a lot of vegetables, and they have a good selection here."

She added she buys other ingredients for cooking, including bell peppers and onions.

"This store is also closer to my home, so it's easy to shop here," Hartman said. As customers make their way toward the back of the store, they will find the meat market.

The meat selection is something Ibarra is very proud of. The meat is cut every day, something he said his customers appreciate.

The market sells a variety of meats from pork, beef, chicken and seafood with the addition of ready-to-cook meats that have been prepared so customers need only choose how they will cook it.

The butchers in the meat market use specially prepared spices and marinades for meat that are also sold in the store.

Longtime meat market patron Floyd Ramirez, of Mission Valley, likes to buy carne al pastor, a dish of marinated then roasted pork, fresh from the butchers at least once a month.

"It's well-marinated with spices," he said. "That's why I buy it."

The butchers are very helpful, he said, and are ready to get him what he needs when he comes in.

Ibarra believes the meat department is one of the store's most popular features. The store's taqueria is another feature that draws patrons in for lunch and breakfast.

The taqueria serves breakfast and lunch plates with specialty dishes, including caldo de res, a Mexican beef stew, tamales and a bar of house-made salsas.



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