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Apr 13, 2006 01:22 PM

Taqueria La Michoacana in Norristown

  • g

I will be in Norristown next week and it has been a while since I have been there. I recommended The Taqueria to a friend a few months back and when he was in the area his client who happened to be a big Mexican fan told him that the place changed hands and wasn't the same so my friend didn't go.

Anyone been there recently?

Also any other suggestions for that general area welcomed.

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  1. I don't know that the taqueria had changed hands, but it certainly has changed.

    I used to live in west norriton, just west of the taqueria from 02-05. I went there very regularly -- at least three times a month for those three years.

    In the last year, I've probably gone once every two months or so. I have noticed that since the menu change (where prices went up) the quality also went down.

    Two of these times I got chicken soft tacos. I don't know how long the tacos were sitting before I got them, but they were terribly soggy and almost inedible -- this happened twice.

    The last time I was there, I got the enchiladas verdes, which were about the same as they usually are -- good. I steered clear of the tacos, which are usually my favorite.

    Generally, things just haven't been as good though. I'm not sure why. And it's not just the soft tacos, my dining companions mentioned the changes as well, although I cannot recall what they picked.

    All this being said -- it's still better than most mexican places.

    4 Replies
    1. re: DanielleM

      I don't agree, this place is not better than most Mexican places and never has been. I never understand why folks have have loved it so much. Just goes to show you what we will all settle for in the absence of authentic, totally delicious food. And call me a snobby food curmudgeon but I have not had ANY very good Mexican in or around Philly,ever! Some of the best roast pork (Pernil) on the planet is available at the Puerto Rican restaurant Freddy and Tony's at 2nd and Lehigh in North Philly.You buy it for $5 a lb, it's laced with fresh garlic and spices and is one of the best things you can put in your mouth in Philly.You can eat in or get it to go!!!

      1. re: Miss Claudy

        I respectfully disagree -- I've been to many mexican joints in the area, as well as a few in other places (like LA) and the taqueria WAS in the beginning...incredible. Everything was fresh and authentic and perfect. I know i'm not the only one who thought this.

        1. re: DanielleM

          I ate at the Michoacana when it first opened too and was not thrilled, although it was better than it is now, I agree.

          1. re: DanielleM

            I agree with you, we found the place by accident and it was really good. I recommended it to quite a few people who were also impressed.

      2. m
        Main Line Tracey

        If you are into authentic Mexican food, with little ambiance and tiny prices, I would try Taqueria Mexico Lindo on Main St in Norristown. I was the only gringo there and the food was muy bien!

        2 Replies
        1. re: Main Line Tracey

          Thanks, often the "no ambiance" places do have the best food. Do they at least have a few tables?

          1. re: George
            Main Line Tracey

            Yes. From what I remember I believe that they do have a few tables. Enjoy, and please let us know how it goes!

        2. Bummer.
          I was there about six months ago and I noticed a fairly big difference in quality.

          It's a bit further out, but there's a relatively new taqueria in Phoenixville that's really great. Los Mariachis. Great nachos in particular. Authentic and cheap eats.

          9 Replies
          1. re: EMZ

            I guess some of their customers were expecting Chi-chis so they are trying to accomadate them?

            Thanks for the suggestion on the Phoenixville place. We have to head towards the NE extension anyway so it isn't out of the way.

            1. re: George

              Can we please get some more info on the Pville place? Address or Location? Website if available?

              1. re: LeepinLeemur

                I could only find this link and am assuming it is the right place.


                1. re: George

                  Yes, that's the place. It's on Gay Street...I'm pretty sure the cross street is Second, but you might want to double check that.
                  We always do take out, but they do have tables. From what I recall (my husband usually picks up) they're long picnic-like tables. No ambiance whatsoever. Really nice folks, though, and reasonable (if not extremely reasonable) prices. I'm not all that thrilled with their tacos - they're authentic, but don't quite compare with the tacos I used to get when we lived in San Francisco. What can I say...I'm spoiled.

                  1. re: EMZ

                    Los Mariachis is at Gay St. and Washington Ave. (not Second) in front of what used to be Kahn's Tavern for years (which just closed). Good food, reasonable prices, still frequented by Mexicans (unlike Taqueria La Michoacana in Norristown after it went upscale). The salsas are all of the blender variety; no traditional chunky types. But the food is good and at good prices. Lunch is the best deal. They have a $5.95 lunch menu with a dozen things on it. For instance, you can get FIVE tacos for this price. And if you ask for "mixtos" they'll give you a variety. For this price at Taqueria La Michoacana you get three chicken tacos and they up-charge for other meats or mixtos. Five tacos plus chips and salsa is almost too much food for me at lunch unless I can take a siesta afterwards. :)

            2. re: EMZ

              With all due respect, nachos are not an authentic Mexican food. I think Frito Lay invented them to sell chips. They are probably Tex-Mex. They are yummy,though!!!!

              1. re: Miss Claudy

                Oh, totally Tex Mex. They do have an authentic version, though, but we usually just go with the Tex Mex - cheese, beans, sour cream, avocadoes and some of the best carnitas EVER.
                I'm usually a snob when it comes to seeking out authentic Mexican (Tex Mex Knock Offs = Lame) but I make these nachos an exception;)

                1. re: EMZ

                  What is an authentic version of Nachos? I'm being curious here, not a nasty food snob. Glad you like Freddy and Tony's, doesn't it rock with porcine deliciousness? . We should have a Chow Hound dinner there sometime!!!!!!

                  1. re: Miss Claudy

                    I think our messages got blurred...I have never been to the place you are talking about - I was referring to Los Mariachis (a taqueria) in Phoenixville.

                    You're right...there probably is no such thing as authentic Mexican nachos, but I've seen it on menus in restaurants that otherwise serve authentic cuisine. Weird.

            3. i eat at taqueria la michoacana approximately once every other week since i live just down the road and it is convenient. aside from some really terrible music occasionally, slow service and loud-loud-LOUD patrons i really do love dining there. i order the enchiladas suizas with peppers (vegetarian) and they are hot, fresh and delicious every time. salsa is good and kickin. the margaritas are *really* strong, but i do dine there often and tip very well! not being from mexico, i can't vouch for its authenticity - but eat there for what it is, if you like it. hey, you melt cheese over carbs anytime --- i'm down.

              their guac's got nothing on my homemade version, though! ;)

              1. I was just there a few days ago. As everyone else has mentioned, it's still good, but more expensive and not quite as good as when they first opened. After they were "discovered" they redecorated, reprinted menus in English, went upscale a bit.

                But my most recent visit irked me. They have secretly (without putting up any signs or notices in the menu) started rounding your bill UP to the nearest quarter dollar. And their rounding formula is not a "fair" one that averages out over all customers: $20.14 is rounded UP rather than down to $20.25.

                When I asked the manager why my bill didn't add up, she pulled out her calculator, added up my bill ($12+$7 = $19) and added tax for a total of $20.14. Then she pointed to the calculator as if she was vindicated and said, "See. Total is, uh, $20.25. They round here. No one else complain." I just stared at her. She opened the cash register, which held nothing but bills and quarters and said, "Do you have change?" I didn't. So I did the most logical thing. I gave the waitress a $4 cash tip and put the $20.14 on my credit card forcing the restaurant to eat the MasterCard processing fees and give me my 1 percent rebate. The restaurant ended up paying MasterCard processing fees far greater than the rounding they were trying to scam. 11 cents means nothing to me. Good business practices do.

                9 Replies
                1. re: robo45h

                  boy that is a new one on me!!! I've never heard of someone doing that. Are they implying their workers are incapable of figuring out how to give change??? Bizarro. I would have done the same thing as you.

                  my experience is also the is still good but no longer excellent. I'll have to try out the other places mentioned in this thread before I go back.

                  1. re: abaesel

                    Has anyone been here recently. I am looking for a good ethnic restaurant, best if Mexican and would go here, but Conshy would work too. Any ideas? Thanks.

                    1. re: famillemintz

                      this place remains my favorite mexican joint in or around philly. i went a few weeks ago and the salsas have a great kick to them, which is one of my favorite things about that place. it may be full of gringos but the salsas still leave me emptying my water glass regularly! :)

                      1. re: rabidog

                        Thanks rabidog. Does anyone know if they take reservations?

                        1. re: famillemintz

                          We've been here a few times, what hurts things for us is the "chihuahua cheese" they insist on putting over everything. It's like Mexican feta cheese, yeech.

                          1. re: famillemintz

                            Not sure about reservations, but we take out from there all the time. Sometimes the music is a bit too loud and heavy on the tuba!
                            Try the chili rellenos, they're really great.

                            1. re: kissdadish

                              we went to Los Arcos on Markley St. last night. It's definitely more of a hole-in-the-wall than TLM but the food was every bit as good/authentic and a bit cheaper too. The staff was friendly, we'll probably head back again.

                        2. re: famillemintz

                          Here you go:

                          You might also do a search on Chow as well -- I know it's been mentioned.

                          I really like the place, but because it's not BYOB, the alcohol can start jacking up your tab if you are not careful. Their complimentary salsas are great. Yes, they take reservations, but most of the time you don't need them. I you were going with a group (6 or more), I'd suggest them.

                          1. re: famillemintz

                            i haven't been in a few months but i thought it was delicious and a bargain. the owners have also opened another restaurant in Lambertville NJ (Buho's) with an identical menu.