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Feb 16, 2009 12:30 PM

screaming goat--budget chow

Hi everyone, I didn't see The Screaming Goat reviewed on here so I thought I'd give it a go since it's quickly becoming a neighborhood go-to.

It's basically Mexican, although they do include burgers on the menu. I am new-ish to Texas and the intricacies of all the types of Mexican, Tex-Mex, and interior Mex food, but my instinct is to say this is definitely not Tex-Mex--no gooey cheese--and as to whether it's "gringo" or int. Mex, my boyfriend said it tasted more similar to the food he got in Mexico City than the stuff we usually get here. However, it had that healthy vibe, so I don't know...

To start with, it's inexpensive, especially if, like me, you eat your veggies instead of meat! They give you a dollar off each menu item if you order it without meat, which puts them near to my heart. So I think each veggie taco is around 1.50. Also, every day they have a basic beer special for less than $2.00--Corona, Lone Star, and I think sometimes Dos Equis. They also have rotating food specials.

Fresh is the word to describe pretty much everything there-- they fresh fry the chips, the salsas are all homemade. The two green ones, tomatillo and verde, are delicious, unusual (to me) in their inclusion of vinegar. I ate ALL my salsa with my chips. : ) I think they make their own corn tortillas, or at least they source them from somewhere good because they actually taste like corn and not chewy plastic. The flour tortillas also seemed fresh off a griddle, but they were just a tiny bit dry--I would say no lard and maybe not very much fat and oil in them. They could use a little scoop.

I ate the black bean / veggie mix tacos on corn--highly recommended, as well as delicious poofy sopapillas with honey. There were tons of happy families eating there when I was there, so I am curious what you all would say about the meat!

So yeah! For vegetarians, it's about the same price as Taco Cabana, but a million times better. : ) And the ambience is totally relaxed--maybe not the place to try to impress someone on a date, but if you're at the tacos and beer point, it's very comfortable to chat and eat. The only quirk is if you pay together, they don't separate your food onto your own plate. I guess you have to ask for extra plates? Kind of mysterious.

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  1. I ate here last week. glad someone gave it a full review.

    I disagree though. I was underwhelmed and have had better tacos at any of the carts in town.

    The taquitos were el paso style if that's your thing.

    1. I think the goat has the best season chicken tacos on town. Saturday deal is a steal. Love the roasted pepper/vinegar salsa.

      6 Replies
      1. re: RoundSparrow

        If you have not already, I invite you to try Habanero's chicken fajita rancheros. I will throw them in as the best chicken taco in Austin.

        You go check it out, I'll go check out screaming goat and we can reconvene in a week or so to compare notes.

        1. re: craveytrain

          habanero is great. anything from their grill is going to be good. those fajita ranchero's are hot too.

          1. re: craveytrain

            if you mean Habanero Mexican Cafe, I've indulged dozens of times (near my hood). I agree a great place. I love both of their salsas too. I also suggest nearby Taqueria Jacalitos truck.

            I admit that Screaming Goat is a mid Saturday indulgence now about twice a month. The Verde salsa is probably a love hate thing, but those that love it...

            1. re: RoundSparrow

              Excellent, so, how would you compare Hab's chicken fajita ranchero tacos to the goat's?

              1. re: craveytrain

                How about you compare and report back ;)

                1. re: RoundSparrow

                  I just got back from lunch there. Tasty, no denying it. Definitely, the Verde sauce is the best, imho. I got the chicken adobado, al pastor and tilapia tacos. I actually thought the al pastor was the best of the 3, but very strong seasoning. Tastes a lot like chorizo, actually.

                  While tasty, I still feel that Hab's has the best chicken taco in town.

        2. Went to the Screaming Goat yesterday. The queso, homemade chips, and salsas are excellent. Had the carne asada and adobabado chicken tacos. The beef was a tad chewy but the chicken was great. The wife had a ground beef taco and said it was good. The homemade corn tortillas were good.

          Make sure you ask the story behind the t-shirt that says "Eat like a cholo." if you want to make the cashier really uncomfortable. Pretty funny story and I wish they would have went through with it!

          1 Reply
          1. I ate here for the first time today. It was that perfect combination of qualities I look for in a restaurant that I will visit often: cheap, high quality ingredients, casual, and the specialize in just a few dishes. I had the chicken flautas ahodabo with the rojo sauce, meaning the salsa covers the flautas, Great churros, too. Hours later, at dinner time, I came close to making a return trip just to try the green sauce, but I suppose I can wait for tomorrow.

            One decent way to save money there is to avoid the $2 fountain drinks. But even with that added in, my lunch today came to about $6.80. I shall return, Sceaming Goat.

            6 Replies
              1. re: rudeboy

                It's in the old house that was Basil's off of Lamar I believe

                1. re: singlemalt

                  singlemalt - just goes to show that we're all getting older!!!

                  I remember Basil's, but I couldn't tell you what's been there since....

              2. re: skechada

                Ate there for lunch today. I also had the chicken flautas with roja sauce. For $4.20 it was hard to beat. I'll be going back for sure. They also have good beer prices.

                1. re: Madcap

                  I went last week and had the al pastor. Very underwhelming, especially considering Rosita's is awesome and 5 tacos for $5 at lunch. I did like the chips and the green salsa that was marked as the hottest. I'll be darned if I could taste any heat though. It was just really fresh and green tasting which was good too.

                  I tried a bite of my friends taquitos and if I were in the mood, I'd probably go back for those.

                  1. re: foodiegal71

                    Consensus seems to be - the chicken is their best meat.

              3. to reply to myself--the veggie burgers aren't too good, always seem to come out dry, even when covered with delicious smotherings like sour cream and roasted chilis. Stick with tacos, beer, guacamole, and salsa! :)