The fabulous mole buffet at Los Moles in Emeryville

by foodhoe on June 10, 2019

1320 65th Street, Emeryville, CA  94608 | Phone+1 (510) 570-1703 | website

This is one of my favorite brunches in the East Bay.  Every weekend Los Moles puts out an amazing buffet where you can sample all eight of their fantastic Mole sauces created by owner/chef Lito Saldana.  It’s a lavish spread of everything you could possibly want to indulge in for a Mexican feast.  You’ll drool when you look at the extravagant buffet packed with succulent meats, iconic rice and beans, fresh salsas, classic comfort food dishes like menudo and pozole, fruits, salads, desserts, drinks, agua fresca and of course, all of those moles…

Mole is something like the national dish of Mexico that spans a spectrum of colors, textures, and flavors. Oaxaca boasts seven moles that range in color from green to yellow, rust, and black.  It is a magical blending of chiles, spices, nuts and seeds into a vibrant sauce full of intricate flavors that takes hours, sometimes days, to prepare, and the mole buffet showcases all of the namesake specialties of the house.  The sauces are made from family recipes which all use anywhere from 30-50 ingredients, there’s Mole Poblano that’s made with seven different types of chile peppers, cinnamon & chocolate, Mole Mama Luisa Mama Luisa’s specialty red mole, made with chile guajillo; Mole Mama Elena their Grandmother’s personal recipe Mole Negro, made w/ chile mulato; their grandfather’s Mole Pipia made with pumpkin seeds and essence of chile guajillo;  Mole Verde is Chef Saldana’s specialty made w/ fresh chile poblano, Mole Mango a mole sauce made with chile guero andfresh mango; Mole de Piña made with chile guero, fresh pineapple; Mole Habanero made with chile habanero and red bell pepper

The meat selection includes carnitas, shredded meats like pork belly pictured below, beef or chicken, tender chile verde, chile colorado, and each of the moles include a meat that is carefully noted on the sign.

It is an all day kind of brunch, so there are breakfast fixings of scrambled eggs with nopales, or eggs scrambled with bacon and mushroom

Cilantro rice, spanish rice, black beans and refried beans

A couple of closeups of the mole sauces, rich and velvety and full of mystery.  Mole Pipian is one of my favorites, not too spicy, a little sweet but so flavorful.

Mole Poblano is a dark, complex sauce made from dried chiles, nuts, seeds, spices, and a bit of chocolate.

Fresh condiments of shredded cabbage, julienned radish, minced white onion, fresh and dried chile peppers, fresh lime, fresh habanero peppers.  All are required toppings for the Menudo and Pozole and play an important role in rounding out the flavors and textures.  To some people, it is all about the garnishes.

Pozole is traditionally a pork based brothy soup layered with hominy kernels, dried chile peppers, garlic and aromatic herbs that is simmered for hours until it becomes savory and hearty.  It is brightened when topped with the above garnishes.

Menudo is a traditional spicy stew of beef tripe and hominy, which simmers for hours in a fiery red broth flavored by chiles, garlic, and spices (and will often include pork trotters). Over time the tripe becomes tender like calamari and infused with the flavors of the stew which is spicy, complex, and packed with flavor.  The stew is believed to cure hangovers, by stimulating the senses, rejuvenating the insides, and clearing the head, which is why it’s such a popular option on weekend brunch menus.

House made tortillas fresh from the griddle

With all of these taste bud stunning dishes, you are guaranteed to have many plates packed with unbelievable deliciousness!

There is a separate section for desserts, platters filled with seasonal fresh fruits.  It’s hard to leave room for this but you should!

Arroz Con Leche (Rice Pudding) flavored with cinnamon and raisins.

Individual bites of Flan, a rich creamy egg custard flavored with caramelized sugar

Churros, fried dough coated with cinnamon sugar, are cut into bite sized pieces.

And there are many colorful folk art sculptures of fantastical creatures (alebrijes) perched throughout the dining room, although I must admit that my eyes were mainly focused on the wonderful food…  There’s usually a line unless you get there early, and there are several tables outside where you can enjoy your feast alfresco.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Kirk June 17, 2019 at 1:09 pm

Looks quite good! It’s nice having new posts again!


grace June 30, 2019 at 12:04 pm

this is my kind of buffet, and not just because i love the way “mole buffet” sounds! i have a feeling i’d eat way too many churros.


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