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Tots and taters 

After a harrowing drive on a road you're not quite sure your very low-clearance Toyota Matrix is going to make it up or down, there's something satisfying about sitting down at a picnic table in the shade of an umbrella as the adrenaline leaves your system. (Yes, I'm speaking from experience—and yes, it was FUN, even though I lost part of my bumper!) We pulled into the historic Pozo Saloon around 3:30 p.m. on a Sunday and were ready for some barbecue. Grabbing a jar of Pozo Martini (beer and olives, why would you want anything else?) and looking over the menu, I ordered a BBQ Yard-Bird Sandwich with barbecue sauce. My friends ordered burgers and tri-tip and some starters for the table: regular tater tots and chili-style tater tots. Because tater tots are back, according to one of my friends. It's hard to understand why they ever went anywhere in the first place. Grated potatoes packed into a little nugget and then fried to perfection. Crunchy and a little bit greasy with the right seasoning salt. For some reason, the tots were better than my sandwich. And the chili-style tots, although they got soggy quickly, were also tasty: Pozo chili, cheese, onions, sour cream, jalepeños, and salsa.

Tater tots are $4 or you can get them chili style for $10 at the Pozo Saloon, 90 Pozo Road in Santa Margarita. The saloon is open Friday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Δ

Editor Camillia Lanham knows there's nothing wrong with a little adventure. Send comments to

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