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Looking for best fish taco's in Boston??

JoeFood Feb 25, 2008 04:32 PM

Living in southie where the food is seriously sub-standard across the board thus I am more than willing to travel.

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  1. wittlejosh RE: JoeFood Feb 25, 2008 04:34 PM

    La Verdad in Fenway makes great ones.

    Picco in the South End used to have good ones as a special.

    6 Replies
    1. re: wittlejosh
      TPistrix RE: wittlejosh Feb 26, 2008 09:35 AM

      Second La Verdad. The fish is fried, so it's slightly crispy and moist. Yum. Great margaritas there too (homemade sour mix and they use agave nectar, I think, as well).

      1. re: TPistrix
        MC Slim JB RE: TPistrix Feb 27, 2008 07:22 AM

        I really enjoyed the fish tacos at La Verdad in their opening weeks, too, but they started cheaping out with a single tortilla per taco. Especially with a messily-dressed taco like the fish one, it quickly falls to pieces. At those prices, I'm not sure which adjective to hurl first: shameful or ridiculous.

        1. re: MC Slim JB
          saltyair RE: MC Slim JB Mar 4, 2008 05:07 AM

          La Verdad is the BEST!

          1. re: MC Slim JB
            TPistrix RE: MC Slim JB Mar 4, 2008 09:22 AM

            Geez, that's a shame. I think the last time I had the fish tacos there was a few months ago (September, I think). Have you had that problem a few times or is there a chance it was just a mistake/one cook? Definitely no excuse for cutting costs that way.

            1. re: TPistrix
              wittlejosh RE: TPistrix Mar 4, 2008 10:38 AM

              I doubt it's a "cost-cutting" measure.

            2. re: MC Slim JB
              Chicky RE: MC Slim JB Apr 23, 2008 01:00 PM

              El Pelon has wonderful fish tacos. I eat there often and have never been short-changed in the tortilla department. Cafe D also makes a respectable fish taco for about $10. (two tacos, two tortillas each, if I recall correctly)

        2. finlero RE: JoeFood Feb 25, 2008 04:42 PM

          Also in the Fenway is El Pelon, whose fish tacos are as good as many I've had out west.

          2 Replies
          1. re: finlero
            lipoff RE: finlero Feb 25, 2008 10:36 PM

            My first nod would be to El Pelon, but there are also very good (albeit more expensive) fish tacos at the Ole Mexican Grill in Inman Square. See my earlier posting about them:


            1. re: finlero
              mollymac RE: finlero Apr 24, 2008 08:37 AM

              I'm obsessed with the fish tacos at El Pelón. I've never even tried anything else on their menu and will trudge to the Fenway in the most inclement weather when the craving grabs me, dragging along in my wake whoever happens to be in my company. I've tried La Verdad as well, and those are pretty good, too, but El Pelón is my one true love in this category.

            2. Food4Thought RE: JoeFood Feb 25, 2008 07:12 PM

              Admittedly I have never had a left coast Baja fish taco, I thought the ones at La Verdad were very good.

              1. m
                mbtabus69 RE: JoeFood Feb 26, 2008 08:24 AM

                tuna tacos at East Coast Grill in Inman Square--not your typical fried ones, but delicious just the same.

                East Coast Grill and Raw Bar
                1271 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02139

                1. BarmyFotheringayPhipps RE: JoeFood Feb 26, 2008 08:57 AM

                  A digression in the current thread about Cafe D says they have proper fish tacos: light, flaky fried fish in tortillas with cabbage and crema. I admit that I have not tried them myself yet, but having been bitterly disappointed in El Pelon's fish tacos, I'm anxious to pop over to JP to try them for myself as soon as possible, and will report back.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
                    phatchris RE: BarmyFotheringayPhipps Feb 26, 2008 09:07 AM

                    I had them about a year ago and enjoyed them. Wish I was in the JP area more often.

                    1. re: phatchris
                      autopi RE: phatchris Feb 26, 2008 09:22 AM

                      my sentiments exactly. i've had the fish tacos at both el pelon and cafe d, but both quite some time ago. i thought both were fine (i know some disagree about el pelon) but not in the category of food revelation.

                      1. re: autopi
                        yumyum RE: autopi Feb 26, 2008 10:23 AM

                        Oh gawd. Don't get me wrong -- the tacos at Dafe D are NOT in the category of food revelation (like say the carne asada torta from Tacos Lupita I am eating right now) but they are good, traditional style fish tacos.

                  2. p
                    pinke_v RE: JoeFood Feb 26, 2008 09:02 AM

                    My vote goes to the Bonfire Steakhouse (Todd English's restaurant). The most amazing Baja style Fish tacos I have eaten. They even have a tuna tartare taco. Their very good salsa and guacamole makes it a must-try.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: pinke_v
                      Alcachofa RE: pinke_v Feb 27, 2008 06:12 AM

                      I used to like the steak tacos at Bonfire (maybe I still do--it's been a couple years). However, even then I thought the salsa and guac were both mediocre.

                    2. m
                      mr mangia RE: JoeFood Feb 26, 2008 01:03 PM

                      Ole in Inman has Mahi Mahi ones that are tasty.

                      1. itaunas RE: JoeFood Feb 27, 2008 06:27 AM

                        I am still looking for the holy grail in local Baja-style fish tacos. El Pelon is probably the best bet. Another option is Maria Bonita in Cambridge which uses fried fish and cabbage. I would love to convince the folks at Tres Amigos to do a fried fish taco as they have done a grilled one as a special and put a lot of care into the food -- I think they would do it well.

                        I really don't see what Bonfire's tacos have to do with Baja (lots of weird ingredients with nothing to do with Mexico) and they were a real disappointment after seeing them pushed here.

                        9 Replies
                        1. re: itaunas
                          BarmyFotheringayPhipps RE: itaunas Feb 27, 2008 06:32 AM

                          Maybe it was just an aberration the time I had them, but the fish tacos I had at El Pelon failed miserably in the choice of fish, which was a breaded piece of a dense, oily fish. Baja-style fish tacos have light, flaky fish in a crisp batter. The presentation was basically correct, as I recall, but the fish itself was all wrong.

                          1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
                            finlero RE: BarmyFotheringayPhipps Feb 27, 2008 06:58 AM

                            My wife shared your sentiments for a while. After I came home several years ago raving about my first El Pelon trip, she went three times over about two months.

                            Trip 1 - they were out of fish tacos.
                            Trip 2 - they were soggy and bad.
                            Trip 3 (for whatever reason, the first time we went together) - the were finally up to scratch.

                            I've also had a few off experiences, so I'd say they're definitely inconsistent, but good when they're on.

                            1. re: finlero
                              BarmyFotheringayPhipps RE: finlero Feb 27, 2008 07:38 AM

                              I'm willing to give any place a couple chances, but I guess that after a while, I get sick of the crapshoot, especially in a town with so many really good, consistent restaurants. I'd rather have no fish tacos than inconsistent fish tacos.

                              1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
                                Dax RE: BarmyFotheringayPhipps Feb 27, 2008 09:05 AM

                                If you get the fish tacos at El Pelon, you have to eat them there immediately. If you get them to go, the steam kills them (particularly the tortillas) within 5 minutes.

                                1. re: Dax
                                  BarmyFotheringayPhipps RE: Dax Feb 27, 2008 09:07 AM

                                  Did eat them there. Didn't help.

                          2. re: itaunas
                            Aromatherapy RE: itaunas Mar 4, 2008 03:57 AM

                            Tried Maria Bonita's recently. Crispy fried fish chopped into pieces, cabbage, crema, 2 tortillas. Nice but nothing revelatory. Prefer El Pelon but not enough to deal with schlepping to Fenway. Will continue just making my own, they're easy and I can fool around with them. I like MB's ceviche, for a fish fix.

                            1. re: Aromatherapy
                              digga RE: Aromatherapy Mar 4, 2008 04:20 AM

                              Agreed about Maria Bonita. If we weren't in the 'hood, we wouldn't make a special trip, but we enjoy the aforementioned fish tacos, ceviche tostada (deceptively filling - makes a meal for me), beef machaca. It's also nice to be able to eat in and wash it all down with a beer or two. Location is a bit off the beaten track. Makes me worry about how they stay in business sometimes.

                              1. re: digga
                                yumyum RE: digga Apr 23, 2008 12:43 PM

                                hey digga -- finally made it over to Maria Bonita today. I was actually looking for Good Food cafe and couldn't find it so ended up at MB. I was delighted to see they serve beer, although it was a quick lunch for me so I couldn't indulge. There were a few other people in there for lunch, which was good to see. I didn't remember to try the fish taco, but the carnitas is good -- although the torta at Tacos Lupita is still better with more fillings, plus avocado and jalapeno. What I like best at MB is the machaca -- made a note that they serve machaca and eggs which sounds like a great way to kick off the day!

                              2. re: Aromatherapy
                                itaunas RE: Aromatherapy Mar 4, 2008 10:53 AM

                                WRT to making your own. I found some nice shaped cod pieces (and better than their packaged version) at the Chelsea MB, along with their 7-10 types of crema. Not a usual thing, but inexpensive and pretty good quality. Also an Oaxacan cheese brand I hadn't seen there before (they always have it, but there is another brand which is more common). La Internacional in Union also seems to have a lot more air and salt dried fish for Lent, along with a new batch of Matouk's (the smaller bottles, the large ones seem to have been there for a long time).

                            2. litchick RE: JoeFood Feb 27, 2008 12:14 PM

                              NOT Ixtapa in Lexington/Arlington. Quite possibly the worst I've had -- very fishy tasting, very unpleasant.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: litchick
                                rlh RE: litchick Feb 27, 2008 06:43 PM

                                I've had really good ones at Ixtapa, unfortunately not recently -- they have been average to bad, sometimes fishy and usually missing a key ingredient each time like lime, cilantro, sauce, etc. It's shame as they are nice people there. It was the only dish I really liked among a pretty basic, definitely not a destination Tex-Mex menu.

                              2. h
                                Hambone Willy RE: JoeFood Feb 27, 2008 02:36 PM

                                One place I haven't seen mentioned yet is Zocalo in Arlington on Broadway (There is one in Brighton but I've never been). Their fish tacos are excellent, tortillas are "West Coast" style (not sure how else to describe) and the fish is pretty good quality. They are usually a Special (offered every time I have been - which is probably a dozen times) but I don't think they are on the regular menu. Their hot sauce is gret too. REAL hot.

                                1. z
                                  Zatan RE: JoeFood Feb 27, 2008 05:32 PM

                                  I've only ever had them at La Verdad, but I must say I liked them a lot. I know there's been a lot of talk about the one taco vs. two, I didn't care so much. For me this was two big bites, and they were really delicious, the fish light and fresh tasting, the batter crispy and not greasy, the sauce tasty, and the taco enough to hold it together.

                                  1. b
                                    Blumie RE: JoeFood Mar 3, 2008 05:58 PM

                                    According to Excelsior's website, their bar menu now includes Baja fist tacos. I'll try to get over there later this week to check them out.


                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: Blumie
                                      Trumpetguy RE: Blumie Mar 3, 2008 07:03 PM

                                      Sounds painful, but let us know how it goes :)

                                      1. re: Blumie
                                        Joanie RE: Blumie Mar 4, 2008 04:18 AM

                                        I wonder if they'd be part of their $7 5-7PM menu. Would make them even more enticing.

                                        1. re: Joanie
                                          Blumie RE: Joanie Mar 4, 2008 06:52 AM

                                          I don't think they are.

                                      2. r
                                        Ruprecht RE: JoeFood Mar 4, 2008 01:47 PM

                                        I'm not an expert on the authenticity of these, but I've had them twice at the Plough & Stars recently and they were excellent both times. Surprisingly spicy.

                                        Plough & Stars
                                        912 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139

                                        8 Replies
                                        1. re: Ruprecht
                                          yumyum RE: Ruprecht Mar 5, 2008 10:01 AM

                                          Having just returned from Mexico, this thread makes me especially sad today. I had a ton of good fresh cheap fish tacos, and my new one true love, tacos camarones. I still think Cafe D's offering is pretty close to what I ate this last week.

                                          That said, I am going to pull myself together and check out these guys at the Plough. I like their food in general and it's closer than Cafe D. I also want to get over to Maria Bonita on digga's rec. I always forget about that place.

                                          Oh yeah, and Angela's mole is better than what I had in Mexico, although I wasn't in Pueblo, where she hails from. That's kinda great!

                                          1. re: yumyum
                                            Blumie RE: yumyum Mar 5, 2008 10:05 AM

                                            I was in Mexico recently, too (well, not really Mexico, but Cancun), and while I had some great tacos al pastor, I also could not find any mole to match Angela's.

                                            1. re: Blumie
                                              yumyum RE: Blumie Mar 5, 2008 10:09 AM

                                              I'm reminding myself that if I could walk down the street and get carnitas tacos for $.90 I'd be the size of a VW bus.

                                              But yeah, I was really quite happy to discover we have some of the world's best right in our midst. Adding a place link to Angela's, just to remind folks. Note, they do not have fish tacos.

                                              1. re: yumyum
                                                yumyum RE: yumyum Mar 5, 2008 10:10 AM

                                                Place link didn't work. But you know where it is. :-)

                                                Lexington Street in Eastie.

                                                1. re: yumyum
                                                  kewpie RE: yumyum Mar 7, 2008 09:43 AM

                                                  Cafe D and Picco[ have always had them available on sundays] are good choices-La Verdads' have been hit-or-miss

                                                  1. re: kewpie
                                                    raddoc RE: kewpie Mar 7, 2008 10:14 AM

                                                    Summer Winter in Burlington has fish tacos on the menu. Haven't tried them yet, not being able to reconcile "fish" with "taco".

                                                    1. re: raddoc
                                                      emilief RE: raddoc Apr 23, 2008 01:33 PM

                                                      I have had fish tacos at Summer/Winter's sister restaurant in Maine, MC Perkins Cove, and they are quite delicious. ONly thing is they give you three little puddles of different sauces- not enough but I think they would give you extra sauce if you ask.

                                                      1. re: emilief
                                                        joebloe RE: emilief May 12, 2008 10:19 PM

                                                        I love Baja-style fried fish tacos/burritos. I tried one at Beantown Burrito at South Shore Plaza and requested my money back. I tried one at El Peron near the Fenway and was very disappointed. I tried one at the Ashmont Grill in Dorchester recently and is somewhat happy, though I paid a steep price of $10.

                                                        I miss those double fish tacos for only $2.75 from the 24hr drivethru shacks in San Diego. Nothing here is even remotely worth it in price and quality.

                                        2. l
                                          LDoll13 RE: JoeFood May 20, 2008 01:27 PM

                                          Now, don't laugh.....the first time I ever had fish tacos was at a chain restaurant. Cactus Jack's Great West Grill in Manchester, NH. They serve:
                                          Crispy Haddock Tacos: Fresh Atlantic haddock, crispy fried and stuffed inside two crab-dip wrapped hard shell tacos. Filled with lettuce, pico de gallo, and melted colby & Jack cheese. Served with corral fries, homemade cactus slaw and tartar sauce.
                                          Clearly, they are not authentic....but they are pretty tasty. The double layer shell is genius.

                                          1. e
                                            elisafj RE: JoeFood Apr 2, 2010 02:38 PM

                                            Check out Dorado in Brookline. If you LOVE fish tacos, you will LOVE this place! I moved to Boston from San Diego, America's capital of fish tacos, and this place is a good substitute for Wahoo's, Rubio's, and all the delish local mom and pop chains which my heart pines for weekly!

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: elisafj
                                              jpfoodie1969 RE: elisafj Apr 4, 2010 07:49 AM

                                              Went to Angela's (East Boston) last night and my friend was very happy with her fish taco's- I want to try them next time I go.

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