It's All About the Masa
They've been at this new location for at least a couple of years, but the awning still says "Selena's" while the hand-written sign in the window tells you it's Lopez. Anyway, amidst the breads and cookies and Danish, they do sell a couple of Mexican items: empanadas and tamales, absolutely amazing, ethereal tamales. The tamales are the only things I've had from Lopez, and I've had them quite often. I occasionally stop in during my walks from Park Slope to Sunset Park's Chinatown for a tamale to tide me over. The tamales are rather small, just a few bites, really, and at $1.50 they're not cheap, but they're worth every cent. I've never been a big tamale fan, though I love most things corny. Perhaps I haven't had sufficient tamale exposure, but I've found that tamales are usually too dense and pasty for my taste. Not Lopez's. These are the angel's food of tamales, with the lightest, fluffiest masa I've ever experienced. And it's really all about the masa. They make three kinds: chicken with green sauce or mole, and cheese with red sauce, my personal favorite. They go light on the stuffings, and the sauces ought to be spicier, but, like I said, it's all about the masa.
Lopez Bakery, 645 Fifth Avenue (between 18th & 19th St.), Brooklyn. R train to Prospect Avenue.