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Feb 25, 2007 02:25 PM

Ver Daddy's Taco Shop - Biscayne Blvd MIA

Blech! I've been waiting for this place on Biscayne and around 70th to open for a while after noting that Taco Max (a little further north) wasn't doing so hot. I saw that it finally closed and at around the same time Ver Daddy's opened. How much do I miss Taco Max? Yesterday I had a potato taco at Ver Daddy's that was literally french fries on a tortilla. Not potatoes and rajas, not potatoes and chorizo, french fries. It was vile. My S.O. had a chile verde pork taco and the pork was still tough and undercooked. The tostadas were served on fried flour tortillas with the greyest, most unappetizing looking refried beans I'd ever seen. And as for the tortillas, there is no corn to be found. Everything comes on a flour tortilla: the tacos, the tostadas, even tortilla chips are fried flour ones that are disgustingly greasy and heavy.

I've given this place two chances and am writing it off. It has no saving grace. The dining room is messy and unkept, the service is apathetic (even though it's just a counter) and the food I've already talked about. Anyone else given this place a try?

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  1. Yes. The first time I went was during their first week of opening and it was so comically disorganized that I thought it had to be some sort of Candid Camera episode. There were maybe a half dozen people, at most, there to eat, and they simply could not get an order out right. There was apparently some sort of black hole in effect in the 10 yards between the counter and the kitchen which warped everything and either caused orders to disappear or becume permutated into something the customer hadn't asked for. Part of the problem is that virtually everything on the menu is called some variation of a "taco", even things that are not. For instance, I believe that basically there is a choice of meats, possibly with a couple sauce variations for each, which you can either get as "tacos", or as a "macho taco" (which sounds an awful lot like what most of the world would call a burrito), a "macho taco platter" (same stuff, just not stuffed into a tortilla), and rolled tacos. Unfortunately the staff had not come up with any agreed-upon terminology for describing the multiple variations of "taco," and so literally not a single order came out right during the half hour I waited for a take-out order. (yes, half hour - at least - for a take out order). They also had no extra menus, and ran out of change in the register. They cried uncle and shut down at 8pm because they recognized they didn't know what they were doing.

    The food came out as some gawdawful sloppy mess of meat, beans, more beans (black beans and refried, I think), and chipotle cream, slapped on a tortilla. I actually liked their tortillas, they have a little bit of chew to them, and the taste of the chicken was actually not bad either. And yes, I miss Taco Max so much that we have actually given it a try again! This time a couple weeks later. Food was unimproved, and, of course, they forgot half the order. And there was an avocado stem in our guacamole (at least it was fresh!)

    To be fair, the first night we were there the chef was quite apologetic and apparently slopped all the extra beans on my tacos in an effort to be generous (also gave me a couple of the mistaken orders that the kitchen had put out). He seemed like a nice guy and was really trying. Unfortunately they appear to have absolutely no clue of what they are doing, and the mediocre at best food hardly makes it worth having patience for them to sort it out.

    We'll just stick with Rancho Grande.

    Arturo from Taco Max, where are you??? When I was last in, he said he was looking for a place closer to the design district. I really think a better location would help dramatically. I live close to 79th & Biscayne and so am pretty accustomed to the neighborhood, but boy, it sure seems to get worse even just that one block north of 79th.

    1. I have eaten at Ver-Daddy's on Biscayne and the food there takes me back home to my momma's kitchen. I LOVED it. The flavors were awesome and everything was very well seasoned. My experience with most of the food in Miami is that it is very bland and I was quite pleased to finally have a place that actually had flavor and spice. The food was fresh and from scratch. I thorally enjoyed the salsa choices and the Baha Tacos and tortilla soup.

      Un-organized? Well yes they were still working things out. I was in there both the first week as well as the second. I talked to the owner who has a history and a name at the Executive level in the restaurant business. He had so many people asking when he was to open, that he decided to just open and get the food out there and work out the kinks as he went. He was a very professional and nice man and by talking to him you know he definitely knows what he is doing!!

      While standing at the counter I noticed that he had already started to recognize people by name. These were people that had been coming back every day since he had opened. The day I was in a few members of the Miami Police Department were there and had nothing but good things to say as they left. So my feelings on this, is go try it for yourself and experience the flavors and give the guy a break. He just opened for crying out loud. You have to learn how to walk before you run and I have a feeling he will be running all the way to franchise within the year.

      1. All I have to say is that I had french fries in a tortilla and it was passed off as a taco. If that takes you back to your childhood, so be it. But for me, the place was awful and I believe that given the dearth of good Mexican places in Miami, locals may be fooled into thinking this is authentic Mexican and/or Texmex and/or Mission style. It's not. It's a mess.

        1. Miami and Mexican do not, unfortunately, belong in the same sentence. With very few exceptions. Cheen Hueye & Burrito Grill are the only ones that come to mind. Even Rancho has been mediocre at best. LAX if your nickname stands for LA , CA you must be VERY dissappointed. Anyone with the 'cojones' who wants to try true Mexican cuisine must go to Dona Raquel's in Pompano. There is simply no substitute. Sorry Charlie, Miami Mexy ain't Mexy at all, it's just a masquerade dressed up in a bad tortilla!

          2 Replies
          1. re: netmover

            I guess this is one area where us Broward folk have it much better than our Dade counterparts. There's no dearth of good Mexican places up this way. There's even a couple of taquerias operating out of mobile food carts at the Fort Lauderdale Swap Shop that do very authentic, delicious tacos on the cheap. They're not as good as Dona, but they're damn close.

            Also - I don't mind eating Tex-Mex or American-Mex if I know that's what I'm going to get. I don't necessarily need the 100% authentic thing every time... sometimes a cheesy-beany-savory sort of thing or the spicy-fried-bastard-child thing can be good too. It often bugs me that people who are chowish will sort of slowly start to distance themselves from anything not hand-crafted by fifth generation indigenous peoples of so-and-so, even if some of the other options taste good too. Taste good! That's what it's about, right? Anyway, off soapbox. Point is, there's a handful of good non-authentic Mex restaurants that I'll go to every so often as well -- if I'm in the mood for an artery-clogger. :-D

            1. re: johnmlinn

              Oh please, there's enough Mexican restaurants in Miami-Dade. Too many for my preference actually, but I was never a big fan of that cuisine. Tex-Mex, however, needs to be picked up here, but with some reports coming from Kendall and with Rosa Mexicano, I think it's becoming a pretty acceptable scene in Dade.

              But for top notch Mexican, I've been referring people to Eduardo de San Angel in Broward. As for taquerias, I don't believe any in Broward is worth the trip - there's plenty here especially in South Dade (for example, there's also more than 4 different taquerias in the flea market at Bargain Town, so that sounds like Dade's version of the Swap Shop) and in the western part of Little Havana.

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            1. There's only one place in Miami to get REAL Oaxacan tacos...

                1. re: Frodnesor

                  Aside from some rather extraordinarily complex mole, splendid chocolate/cacao from Mayordomo and La Soledad, and crunchy chapulinas, the hype over Oaxacan cuisine is overdrawn for me. It's the stuff of Food Network specials and Rick Bayless experimentation, but despite loving Oaxaca, I tired of the food quickly. I agree with the idea that under any scrutiny, Cal-Mex, Tex-Mex, real Mexican, Miami-Dade is weak. (But where are those tacos Danny?)