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Dec 1, 2009 12:31 PM

Tlacoyos at Tia Julia - hello new favorite mexican treat, my name is gringo nice to meat you.

Man oh man I think I hit mexican food gold. Never had I heard of these until I saw a post about Tia Julia. It's a grilled (or fried? until crispy) round masa cake folded over and stuffed with big beans, cheese and some spices I had never had in a mexican dish before (a hint of anice I swear). On top is crema fresca, white onions and queso fresco served with green and a smoky red sauce on the side. 2 of them was very filling for me weighing in at 6'1" 210lbs (oi vey).

I got 2 tlacoyos, the regular and the carne enchilada. The regular is as described above, the latter came with carne enchilada heaped on top with the sour cream cheese onions on top of the meat. The meat was def not a side note. SUgar cube sized cubes of well seasoned pork neither greasy nor dry and done just right, not too chewy as alot of taco places can get away with. It wasn't swimming in sauce, enough to keep the meat moist with a little extra to sink into the top of the corn cake soaking up the spicy porky goodness and softening the top layer.

I knew nothing of Tlacoyos before lunch and I'd love to hear of any other variations or places to get them. Other recs for Tia Julia would be appreciated, I saw cemitas on the menu, what else to try?

Tia Julia
68-06 Roosevelt Ave, Queens, NY 11377

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  1. if anyone can accurately identify the stuffing inside I'd be much obliged, other than just "beans".

    1. El Centenario at 21 St/5 Ave in Brooklyn has good tlacoyos also. They also have some nice specials like barbacoa (goat/mutton).

      1. I've mentioned it elsewhere, but I love their Cemitas. It's a monster of a sandwich.

        1. dude, sounds amazing. wow. so these people opened a restaurant? I thought it was only a truck that they had.

          7 Replies
            1. re: E Eto

              awesome! i remember seeing pictures of the menu off of a truck; nice that you get to sit down. will definitely definitely check it out soon: big decision though, cemita or tlacoyos????

              1. re: bigjeff

                I don't see why u cant have both. It'd be alot of food, but totally worth it. How do their cemitas compare to coatzingo? That's the only other place I've had them.

                Any other recs at Tia Julia? I'm gonna give Coatzingo a break, TJ is closer to work and it was alot nicer inside. No chips tho, and i really like the salsa at Coatzingo.

                  1. re: E Eto

                    quesadillas sound pretty great.

                  2. re: 2slices

                    Ok, I've eaten cemitas at both places a bunch of times by now. Julia sometimes will not have the cemita bread on weekdays, so they will not serve them occassionally. I find both TC and Julia cemitas are commendable. Maybe it is a difference in bakeries, but I prefer the cemita roll at Julia. One thing slightly dreadful, for me at least, is that the default setting there is to slather the top bun in mayo. So you need to specify "sin" if you are anti-mayo. Regarding other qualities, it is bit tough to discern individually. They do prepare them a bit different. TC's creations are more tightly layered and wrapped. It's a less messy affair and the tight layering helps to accentuate all the different flavors and textures. At Julia's, the packing is looser. It's a bit messier and things slide a bit as you bite in. Late into their sandwiches, I've swtiched to a fork and knife. That's not a criticism- unless I'm trying to drive while eating one- just a comment. I'm still not sure which of their meats they excel at as I've been dancing with many partners up until this point. I think last time I did chorizo and papas. I haven't been disappointed yet. I like the beef milanese and al pastor versions at TC.

                    I've yet to try the tlacoyos at Julia. As soon as I figure out how to pronounce them, I will give it a go. They do make a decent quesadilla, although the cheese one is no good. They've expanded their menu since they opened as well. Per, it seems, Roosevelt ave de riguer, they are also offering barbacoa de chivo on weekends now. Love to hear about that.

                    One question I have for the former or present patrons of their truck- is the same person(s) in the kitchen cooking as who was cooking in the halycon days of cemita glory documented previously? Just wondering as when I've been to the brick and mortar version there is always a "tio" doing the cemita making, not a "tia"...

                    1. re: Silverjay

                      my GF works at a Mexican place, albeit in Soho, didn't know this until the other day but they serve them. The owner is Mexican so I'll go on her word, the is pronounced but not stressed. tlaCOYos.

                      Far as I understand it is tla, one syllable, not Tee-La. But please do not take my word for it. At Tia Julia I just pointed, the waitress at lunch didn't speak english anyway. But I go some help from a guy at the counter.