By: Phillip Lutz

A Botana Galan is a plate of warmed tortilla chips layered with freshly made pinto beans mixed with chorizo. It is then covered with melted Muenster cheese, topped with fresh onions, green peppers, avocado slices, tomatoes and pickled jalapenos, and it also can be topped with olives and lettuce shreds.

The Botana is a region invention that has spread nationwide and the people of Los Galanes say it is just as common as a sandwich. The inspiration for the Botana came from the Coney Dogs in Detroit and the Canadian poutine.

This restaurant has all the Mexican food you have come to love and they also have their signature dish the Botana Galan. This is listed as an appetizer to share but can also can be eaten as a dinner entree. You can add more meat to the Botana Galan and it will be bigger and better for an additional fee.

If you like Mexican food in an authentic atmosphere you will find it all at Los Galanes in Detroit, and Dearborn. They have authentic Mexican food and also their Tex-Mex equivalents for those picky eaters.

Los Galanes was opened on Labor Day in 1967. The restaurant was opened by Armando Galan who operated Los Galanes with his family and it is now operated by his son James. Galan had a previous restaurant named Armando’s which was located on West Verner in Detroit which he sold to buy Los Galanes.

The restaurants mission statement is “Los Galanes is an independently owned and operated family restaurant serving Metro Detroit since 1967. Our goal is to provide great food at reasonable prices.”

They certainly deliver on the food and the whole experience.

This Mexican cantina also makes their own homemade tortillas. They give you warm tortilla chips and their freshly made salsa when you sit down to your table. Make sure you specify the type of salsa you get because it can be spicy at times.

They have at the Detroit location which is located at 3362 Bagley Ave, Detroit, MI 48216 a specific lunch and dinner menu. The lunch menu is served until 2:30 p.m. daily consists of 24 separate dishes ranging from melt in your mouth appetizers and soups to the typical Mexican fare of burritos and enchiladas. They also have combination plates where you can get several different items that start at $7.49.

The menu is much more substantial at the Detroit location. They have 16 separate appetizers. 10 soups and stews, four salads, six different tortas (sandwiches), and even an American hamburger.

The entrée menu is much more substantial with 18 different Mexican favorites like taco, and enchiladas. They also carry the popular fajitas in several different kinds of meats and sizes ranging in price from $12.49 for steak or chicken to the fajitas for two for $26.29. These prices do fluctuate so make sure you check the menu before ordering.  This cantina also has a wide assortment of seafood options that will tickle your taste buds. From lobster tails and shrimp to some fish entrees.

Not to leave anyone out they have a good looking kids menu and they also stock many quality Mexican and domestic beers. They have at least four beers on tap at all times. They also have catering and party trays to go with their most popular items from the menu. Go to www.losgalanesdetroit.com to check it out.

If you have a sweet tooth the fried ice cream is a must. Not to be left out are their other favorites the baked custard and caramel flan, and their over indulgent cheese cake chimichanga which is deep fried in a flour tortilla shell and smothered in strawberries and whipped cream.

The newest location opened in September 2015 at 22180 Michigan Av, Dearborn. It’s a much more extensive lunch menu can be ordered from until 3 p.m.

The dinner menu at the Dearborn location is about the same as the lunch menu in size, about 32 items that can all be customized to fit the guest’s wishes but they do not skimp on the food or flavor.

The Detroit location can accommodate large groups with their upstairs seating area and their outside patio during good weather days. The Dearborn location has limited seating but is built for all your take out needs. It has limited seating available but it also gives you a true Mexican feel between the décor and the authentic music that is played on the speakers for everyone’s enjoyment.  

The music is recorded and played back with no live music actually being on site. The décor is cactuses all over with some sombreros thrown in. The restaurant itself inside is painted mostly in oranges and bright colors (just like in real Mexican restaurants across the border). The staff is very friendly and also many of whom are from Mexican descent.

If you also want to satisfy your sweet tooth and take it home, go across the street to the La Gloria Bakery that has many wonderful delicious cookies, and cannoli in several shapes and flavors.  This is also a family owned business. They are very reasonably priced and give you the old cafeteria feel with their red plastic trays you put all your goodies onto. Everything is baked in house so you know it is fresh.