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Primal Eats Vancouver: La Taqueria

August 30, 2012

La-Taqueria-Taco

This cute little taco shop has been calling my name for a while. It has two locations, one downtown and one on Cambie St., which is the one I checked out. It’s bright and colourful inside and out. And at the time of this review, it was the #4 rated “cheap eats” restaurant on Urbanspoon. It’s claim to fame is that it sells authentic tacos from traditional recipes with local, organic and sustainable ingredients. The idea is to sell tacos similar to those found on the streets of Mexico called pinche tacos.

The menu was what really drew me in: braised beef tongue (de lengua), braised beef cheeks (de cachete), grilled “AAA” flank beef (asada), and chicken with chocolate mole sauce (pollo con mole). Yes, please – one of each. And at 4 for $9.50, why not? Even more so since the ingredients are of higher quality (e.g. AAA beef, Maple Hills medication and antibiotic-free chicken).

La-Taqueria-Tacos-2

Don’t worry, I didn’t eat the taco shells. They’re made of flour, so you might want to just ask them to skip the shells, but I simply ate the meat off them. My friend loved the shells, by the way – said they were chewy in a very good way.

My favourite taco, shockingly, was the flank. I was expecting it to be the least interesting, but the seasoning was surprisingly good, and I actually ended up buying one more. I also really liked the beef tongue, but that’s not all that unusual – I always love beef tongue. The chicken was awesome, but as a chicken fiend I’m biased, and this was only my second time ever having chocolate mole. It being socially acceptable to eat protein drowned in chocolate simply makes me happy. I thought the beef cheeks would be my favourite, but they were just okay. The pickled onions and salsa verde were good, as were the sauces – but careful, start with the least spicy, they pack some serious heat.

La-Taqueria-Tacos

My friend also tried the pork marinated in achiote chilli and pineapple (al pastor) and said it was amazing. And the grilled seasonal fish with pico de gallo (pescado) was just okay.

The meat portions are quite small per taco – and the tacos themselves are rather small as well. But, 4 tacos were enough for me for lunch, although that extra one that I bought didn’t hurt. They for sure would’ve been enough though had I eaten the shells. So  value-wise, I wouldn’t say it’s a screaming deal or anything, but they’re fairly priced considering the higher quality ingredients.

The service was great. Everyone was so friendly. I think I’ve come to accept mediocre service as the status quo. So when faced with friendly service I really take notice. They were pretty busy, but the lines moved quickly. The seating area inside was bright and open.

Overall, a fun taco place with tasty food, interesting menu options, and friendly service. What’s not to like?

La-Taqueria-Exterior La Taqueria on Urbanspoon

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