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Tacos in NYC

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Opening up the forum again. So Cal expatriate seeking only the best...

Any borough, any price - what are the BEST tacos you have consumed in NYC?

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  1. Try Zaragoza, a grocery/taqueria on Avenue A between 13th and 14th Sts.

    2 Replies
    1. re: w/l

      i love zaragoza; that shop is the biggest thing that i miss since moving out of the neighborhood. the folks there are so lovely and warm. tamales (topped with shredded lettuce, cream, white cheese, and green salsa) are good.

      1. re: w/l

        Zaragoza has the best carnitas taco I've had in the city. If you are looking for pollo or pastor, there is no place better or cheaper than El Sol De Cholula in Bushwick. Their salsa verde is also untouchable.

      2. As a fellow CA expat, I'll tell you that you'll be hard pressed to find anything on par with CA street-cart tacos, in terms of quality and price.

        You can, however, find "other" types of tacos--the soft shell crab tacos at Chestnut in Brooklyn for example.

        3 Replies
        1. re: bobjbkln

          oh come on, forget that lets get right to the point here. given that sweeping statement i am doubting how many ny area tacos the op has consumed. i've eaten tacos all over the west coast, sw, texas, la frontera borderland and mexico and a place like TEIHUITZINGO for example is as good as anywhere. sweeping statements about something like tacos is a dubious remark to the extreme.

          1. re: mrnyc

            You haven't been to the right places in Texas then.

            1. re: zbs

              Or la frontera. Tehuitzingo is completely middling.

        2. So far, the best for me have been at Tehuitzingo or Tulcingo del Valle. Tulcingo's are more inconsistent, but did have excellent carnitas there once. Tehuitzingo has many good options and I prefer the taco stand like atmosphere.

          4 Replies
          1. re: Spencer

            I'll second this. We're eating tacos from Tehuitzingo tonight, as a matter of fact.

            Nosher

            Link: http://nycnosh.com

            1. re: Spencer

              Native So-Caler seconds Tehuitzingo. Wasn't as impressed with Tulcingo (tho it may have been an off day).

              1. re: Meg

                Yes, Tulcingo is inconsistent, but still the best carnitas tacos I ever had were there. My guess is that it was either a particular chef or because we ordered more the next time, they were rushed or had sat around. At any rate, the overall range and consistent deliciousness of Tehuitzingo is what we usually prefer.

                1. re: Spencer

                  Tulcingo is more a torta place. Another underappreciated place for tacos in that area is La Paloma on 45th off 9th. Not a lot of exotic choices, but the chorizo is quite tasty.

            2. This is probably not the chowish answer you're looking for, but the tacos al pastor and baja fish tacos at Mercadito.

              1. El Jarro, in Sunnyside, Queens. Excellent tacos for $2. Everything there is really good - you can search the boards for many postings on this place.

                1 Reply
                1. re: emilie01

                  I second this, tacos exactly like we ate in Mexico, and it's BYOB so added cheapness = good thing

                2. Pio Maya on w8th st (east of 6th ave) has damn good tacos as well as everything else (you can search for posts about this place)

                  1. For me the best tacos in NY are at Agave, the smoked tomato/shrimp tacos, which are wrapped in a soft, flour tortilla. They're not like the crisp, beef tacos I enjoyed in LA but I prefer them to others I've had in NYC.

                    1. In Manhattan I like the Super Tacos Sobre Ruedas taco truck on 96th just west of Broadway. It's there only after 7pm weekends. Wonderful for the context, LA-style taco truck, middle of the Upper West Side, as much as the tacos, which are good but not the best.

                      There's also the Red Hook ballfields, which aren't to be missed for the same reason. Search the outer boro board for more info.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Spoony Bard

                        Sobre is phenominal - they have catered my parties before (many yuppies who were suprised not to find baked brie, etc.) Look out for it, or come on up and try!

                        1. re: Spoony Bard

                          I'm glad to see another fan of Sobre Ruedas. I've been enjoying their tacos since it was only a van. Can't vouch for quality because I rarely eat tacos anywhere else, but the constant flow of late night Mexicans is a good sign to me.

                          By the way, unless things have changed recently, it's open every night of the week after 7PM, not just weekends.

                        2. I got some great help on tacos in a previous post. Two places within a block of each other (mentioned in this thread) Tulcingo and Tehuitzingo are pretty good. The staff at Tehuitzingo (two women in the back of this Mexican grocery store at a grill) are from Puebla and cook up some excellent tacos with lots of different fillings. I particularly liked their tripas, lengua and cabeza tacos.

                          Link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

                          1. Downtown Taqueria, in jersey city at 236 Grove St., is worth the PATH trek. I find it superior to this place I visited on 5th Ave near Prospect Park in Brooklyn (the name escapes me), as well as that Matamoros place on Bedford in Williamsburg. It is owned by a guy from LA and his fiancee from Mexico, who insist on an authentic approach that does not abide sour cream or guacamole, as stated in a manifesto on their menu.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: equinoise

                              I second Matamoros. It's a little counter in the back of a bodega. Excellent al pastor.

                            2. Don't laugh, but San Loco has a really good catfish taco. I usually go to the one on 1st Ave and 7th St or the one on Rivington. Everything else I've had there has been mediocre to bad.

                              Mercadito's "tacos" (taco-bites?) are good too, but ridiculously small and even more ridiculously expensive.

                              1. I love the fish tacos at Rosa Mexicano. Yum!

                                1. There's actually a mexican grocery on bedford ave in williamsburg, bk and if you walk all the way to the back there is a little place to order and eat tacos. they are cheap and quite good. Matamoros Puebla Grocery/193 Bedford Ave
                                  Also, if you like fish tacos, La Bonita, another restau in Williamsburg on Bedford, has some really good ones.

                                  1. Tacos Nuevos, on 5th Avenue between 11th and 12th streets in Brooklyn. Great tacos de lengua. Fantastic octopus soup and so on. And cute waitress' as well.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: bigmackdaddy

                                      I was enticed multiple times by the fact that the menu has almost all the right things, but on every occasion it was edible, had all the right ingredients, but managed somehow to be almost completely flavorless.

                                      This isn't typical I suppose but on the last time I went the salsa was simply ludicrous, somehow worse than the stuff you'd get at a fratpack burrito bar.

                                    2. A Phoenix favorite Los Dos Molinos has a restaruant in NYC. It is fiery hot, New Mexican style mexican food. They have good tacos, although that is not their specialty. I think my favorite dish there is the Green Chile plate!

                                      1. Ok, this is a seriously tasty and cheap taco stand that is literally inside a tortilla factory in bushwick (1/2 a block from the jefferson stop). U can sit at a little table and munch on $2 tacos and tostadas and watch them packing tortillas!

                                        Los Tortilleria Mexicana
                                        (718) 456-3422
                                        271 Starr St
                                        Brooklyn, NY 11237

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: anneyuki

                                          The place is called Tortilleria Mexicana Los Hermanos.

                                          Mentioned here: http://www.villagevoice.com/nyclife/0...

                                        2. Calexico (corner of Prince and Wooster in SOHO)

                                          3 Replies
                                          1. re: hongrynyc

                                            a finalist of the Vendy awards! seems to be the most authentic around ... but this is a new yorker opinion who's been to So Cal

                                            1. re: cadireon

                                              Does anyone know if Calexico is there on the weekends?

                                              1. re: a_and_w

                                                Still weekdays only, from around 11 till 3:30 or 4:30, or whenever they run out of food.

                                          2. Mexico Lindo on 2nd ave or Mercadito -- Very different-- Both good!

                                            1. El Vagabundo! Taco truck at 41st Street and Queens Blvd. See article below: http://www.nypost.com/seven/06102007/...

                                              1. This is late in the game, but as an ex-pat californian i've found Tacos Mexico in Astoria (on 38th St just south of Broadway) to be a very comforting place to stuff my taco-hole. They also make the best chiles rellenos i've had, though those are pricier than a couple of $2 tacos.

                                                1. We LOVE the carnitas at Mr. Taco in the Bronx. It's in Pelham Parkway, right at the Bronx Zoo exit train stop #2. We always make it a point to go to this clean, yet dive-y Mexican joint whenever we head to the zoo. It makes me feel like I'm in downtown Los Angeles all over again!

                                                  1. Rico's Tacos on Fifth Avenue near 51st St in Sunset Park are the only worthwhile tacos I've had in New York, having given a fair shot to all the usual suspects in Hell's Kitchen, Villages East and West, roving downtown trucks and various other locations in Brooklyn. (I can't speak for Queens: I always seem to eat Thai.)

                                                    -----
                                                    Piaxtla Es Mexico
                                                    505 51st St, Brooklyn, NY 11220

                                                    1. There's a place in Brooklyn called "Tacos El Rey" (I thought it was maybe "Tacos Del Rey"?). It's near the intersection of Coney Island Avenue and Brighton Beach Avenue and I only saw it because I was taking that route on the B68 bus home one day...but it was good enough to go back to. The Google search I just did shows the address as: Tacos El Rey, 3168 Coney Island Ave, Brooklyn, 11235 Nearest intersection: Coney Island Ave & Brighton Beach Avenue, Tel (718) 769-0116

                                                      I've had the chicken soup: nice and simple with vegetables and a whole poached chicken leg in it, a dinner platter of lengue (tongue) with green sauce, a dinner platter of porkchops mexican style: 2 chops covered with a sauce that had onions and jalepeno peppers in it. I shared the Mexican style porkchops with a friend and she thought it was very tasty. I hate overcooked porkchops that are too tough to chew, so these were really good because the meat was very tender. I've also had an order of lengue tacos that was delicious. I'm a wimp and can't really tolerate spicy heat in foods, so I have to say the green sauce and the mexican style sauces were both a bit too hot for me, but should be fine for the average Mexican food consumer. Tacos are 2 for $5.00, dinner platters range from $7.00 to $12.00.

                                                      1. Can we open it up again? It's been a year and a half and there's another hungry SoCal expat on the boards! For now I'm getting by with Mercadito and Downtown Bakery but I miss tacos like in L.A. or Mexico-city style street food. I should confess that I live in the East Village and don't like to stray far from my apartment (hence my examples, which fit into my six-block radius rule!), but for a good taco, I just might!

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: nycmonica

                                                          what about the place on Ave. B, around the corner from Mama's around east 3rd street? or did they move to an actual restaurant space, on 3rd?

                                                        2. I'll second the recs for De mole - shredded goat tacos, YUM! I've also heard great things about the taco trucks on 41st and QB and 46th and QB in Sunnyside, but I haven't partaken yet. Coatzingo in Jackson Heights is also good, from what I hear.

                                                          1. I live in Astoria but will cruise over to the upper west side for the taco truck on 96th street and Broadway. Simply the best tacos and the tortas are equally delicious. Warm soft corn tortillas, fresh lime, chopped onion-cilantro salad and salsa verde, I'm salivating now.

                                                            1. Tacos de tripa, just found them, at La Onda in the North Bronx on Bronx Park East right near the Bronx Zoo. They also make a mean Oaxacan tamale and the best carnitas I've had since East L.A.

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: RawTunaFan

                                                                I still miss my favorite taqueria in SF (they had an amazing salsa with a secret recipe and fresh tamarindo juice all the time) but I highly recommend exploring east Harlem-- a growing mexican population in the neighborhood has started opening a number of really good options. Here are some of my favorites: 1) El Paso Taqueria (sit down) on 104th and Lexington, 2) new taco truck on 110th just east of Lexington-- soooo good, cheap, and brand new (also has good homemade horchata), 3) if you don't mind hunting a little there is a great, tiny place on 116th between 3rd and 1st Aves on the south side of the street... little awning, great tacos and I can never remember the name this one has a small seating area.

                                                                In Williamsburg there is a new taco truck that is kind of So-Cal surfer (they have a seitan meat substitute veggie taco avail) but the ingredients are good and better than I have found in the area.

                                                                Also, late night on 14th street and 8th ave there is a great taco truck-- usually most of the patrons are latino which is likely a good recommendation. I can't claim to ever have eaten there when completely sober but it is great after being out. We have definitely gone out of our way on the way home to stop by for a few tacos!