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Hole in the wall Mexican?

In town for three days on business. Where is your favorite little Mexican dive that's great for tacos, huevos rancheros, anything? Thanks.

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  1. If your business takes you downtown, Órale Órale has good breakfasts.

    1. The best carnitas tacos on the planet are at La Taqueria on 25th & Mission. Some will complain that this place is expensive, but in reality the quality justifies the price (a fully loaded taco can cost $5.00)...for some reason, most people assume that Mexican food has to be inexpensive. If the the place was called "La Taccarique" and served the best Côtes de Porc aux Pommes à la moutarde, price would not be an object.

      8 Replies
      1. re: Husky

        How do La Taqueria's tacos compare with the al pastor or chorizo tacos a block away at Taqueria San Jose (which charges around $2.50)?

        1. re: Robert Lauriston

          No tacos al pastor at La Taqueria, but their chorizo is really good. The price of the tacos adds up when you want sour cream, avocado, etc. The chorizo should be eaten with salsa and that's it.

          1. re: Mari

            i absolutely agree....the chorizo stands on its own so well there!

          2. re: Robert Lauriston

            Robert, I saw a Taqueria San Jose yesterday in Downtown (First Street I believe)... do you recommend it?

            1. re: Eat_Nopal

              First I've heard of it, dunno if it's connected.

            1. re: Husky

              "The best carnitas tacos on the planet are at La Taqueria on 25th & Mission"

              Alright, next time I'm in SF, I will hit La Taqueria... if the tacos aren't as good as what I've had in Uruapan, Michoacan... I will demand a refund... from YOU!

              1. re: Husky

                La Taccarique" and served the best Côtes de Porc aux Pommes à la moutarde, price would not be an object.

                You just reminded me of a little place in the gritty, working class neihborhood of San Bartolo (Naucalpan) in Mexico City. The place serves "Cuisine Jonque d'lux du Mexique".... it served Mexican street food with a decided ghetto panache to it... but the menu was completely in French, and every oil tablecloth table had fake flowers... it was quite comical & poignant.

              2. La Taqueria does not offer al pastor...I love tacos al pastor and think San Jose has the best around. The chorizo tacos at La Taqueria are as good as San Jose's, but carnitas is what I always order.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Husky

                  Tacos al pastor at San Jose are the best. in. the. world. everytime i go to SF i try to plan for a quick greasy run. i craved them when pregnant with both my boys. also the green table salsa at Picante in Berkeley. used to buy that by the quart.

                  1. re: bunky

                    Picante changed their recipe for green salsa. To my taste it's much improved, but if you liked it before you might be disappointed.

                    For the benefit of the original poster, Picante is the opposite of a hole in the wall. It's a somewhat upscale Berkeley version of a taqueria. Most of the food is bland compared with the real thing, though you can eat well if you order right. Excellent margaritas.


                2. If you make it into Marin, you should try Joe's Taco Lounge & Salsa in Mill Valley (382 Miller Ave, Mill Valley, CA 94941 (415) 383-8164). Everything on their menu is devine, but I recommend you try their street burgers, their grilled snapper tacos (which they serve with a habanero mayo), and their grilled corn-on-the-cob (made with taco magic). But then again, everything is good there. Enjoy!

                  1. Yucatasia, Mission btwn 17th and 18th-Yucatecan

                      1. re: Maya

                        A third vote for Delfin. I've visited three times since someone recommended it to me on this board about two weeks ago. It's amazing.

                        As far as the La Taqueria vs Taqueria San Jose debate, I prefer LT for quality produce and presentation and take TSJ for meat, especially their carnitas taco. If forced to choose, I'd take TSJ every time. Actually, they're just about across the street from each other, so you can have a taco at each and then report back with your findings.

                      2. have to agree with this one. went last week and it was wonderful!

                        Sorry, supposed to be a response to Maya and El Delfin.

                        1. El Farilito, they have the best food ever. they are also open until 2 am or possibly even later! they are always busy but that is a good sign! the food is amazing. 24th and Mission You must check it out!

                          1. One more place - Maya Next Door in SF. It's not quite a grimey hole in the wall, but they set up taqueria service for lunch during the weekdays at this upscale Mexican restaurant. I was pretty impressed with their chicken tinga, although a bit spicey. You can even get homemade toritillas too with your tacos. It's on 2nd between Folsom & Harrison and is a must if you have time for a leisurely lunch in downtown.

                            1. la cumbre is a better taqueria.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: buck mac

                                I think the carne asada is better at La Cumbre but the the al pastor at Farolito is better than almost anything.

                                I remember the day when La Cumbre had lines around the block.

                              2. With all due respect - La Cumbre can't hold a candle to most off the joints in the Mission...go to Taqueria Cancun on 19th and Mission...

                                1. Puerte Alegre is a great dive-y place if it is delicious fruit margaritas you are after and you don't mind settling for fair-to-middling food [their fajitas are pretty good].

                                  1. La Taqueria is more of a gringo hangout than a hole in the wall. Taqueria Jan Jose and Taqueria Cancun fit the description better and have great tacos. I never get to a taqueria at breakfast time, so I can't comment on the huevos.

                                    1. oh - that would be Los Pastores!! Excellent, tasty, clean, authentic (though that word means little to some who use it, her really is authentic - simple - the way good mexican food should be done. She's gonna be at a tamale tasting food event too - on April 22nd at fort mason - you can check out her tamales too.