Sunday, December 19, 2010

Tacos Don Robe

The night after Tacos Mixe I went with my cousin's boyfriend to Tacos Don Robe in Irapuato. Now from what I heard Don Robe is from Arandas, Jalisco, where a lot of tequila is made. The taqueros from there also have a reputation as being the best in Irapuato. When we got to the stand Don Robe was cutting up the steak and taking orders. That's one of the things that sets aside a good taqueria, where the owner is actually there personally cooking and taking orders. If more owners took that much of an interest in their places here there would be a lot more quality taquerias. Don Robe also had a lot of Chivas de Guadalajara stuff on the walls. 100% Arandas man.

Anyways we ordered the tacos to go as we had to get back to my aunt's house and bring everyone else back food. I ordered 6 chorizo and 6 bistec tacos. The bistec was cooked a little crispier similar to how some places here in Chicago make it and the chorizo was spicier than usual and a little chunkier as well. Now I'm not expert in using culinary terms for describing food so words like chunky and spicier will have to do. Like with most take out orders the cebolla y cilantro were on the side and the salsa verde was what like you would expect with most salsa verdes but probably better than most of those. Overall it was a really good taco though nothing out of the ordinary. There will be other postings with tacos made from other dudes from Arandas but better.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Taqueria Mixe

It's been a while since I updated this blog. I'm gonna try to lower the time between updates from now on.

Now while I was in Irapuato my cousins took to taqueria Mixe. The taqueria was owned by people from the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca. Oaxaca is famous for their Indian/Spanish cultural syncretism and pre Columbian sites like Mitla. But here in Irapuato the Oaxacans just focused on making delicious Al Pastor tacos.

I have visited this taqueria on previous visits to Mexico but this post will concentrate on the first time I had them on my recent trip to Mexico. The one thing that I was looking forward to on my return trip was the al pastor tacos. The al pastor tacos there are tiny and I can easily eat twelve of them which I did numerous times while in Mexico. The al pastor itself was cuts into thin slices almost like pastrami unlike the more typical strips. Cilantro and onions were put in a separate bag our first time around as we took the order to go. Green and red salsa were a most and I found both spicy though not as spicy as el Texano's salsa.The al pastor tacos there were probably my favorite during my whole trip and it was obvious that the al pastor was their main draw as there was a taquero whose sole task was to man the pastor spit.

The chorizo and steak tacos were also good but not as good the al pastor. Taqueria Mixe, unlike most taquerias , carried broiled chicken tacos. This was awesome when later on during my trip I wanted tacos but not of pork or beef. Taqueria Mixe also makes a sort of baked potato piled high with cheese, chorizo and al pastor. That's the preferred choice of my prima Karla.

All in all taqueria Mixe have always been dependable and good ever since my cousin first took me there 4 or 5 years ago. I hope I'm able to return soon.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Tacos Napo

Delicious tacos.....


Abasolo aka Abacholo

The second day I was in Irapuato my cousin Carlos decided to take me to a small town called Abasolo about 45 minutes from Irapuato. The purpose of the drive was to go see an archaeological site outside of town. Well we drove into town and picked up a couple girls that Carlos had gone to high school with that supposedly knew the exact way to get to the site from town. Well they didn't because we made a wrong turn into a country road in the middle of nowhere and by the time we realized our error and made it back to the highway and then the site it had already closed for the day. Dejected we drove back into Abasolo and dropped off the girls and to cheer me up Carlos took me into the town square for tacos. Carlos had been to Abasolo numerous times to drink with friends and had become somewhat familiar with some of the food establishments.

The places he took me to was called Napo. It was right of the main square in Abasolo. The thing about Abasolo is that it was a quaint little town and like many small towns in Mexico has had a significant portion of its population that has traveled to the United States. That resulted in a few cholos milling about the town square, though minding their own business.
Upon sitting down the server brought us salsa and napkins and informed me that they had flour tortilla tacos. That made me excited as flour tortillas are rare for taquerias in central Mexico. So I ordered two al pastor corn tortilla tacos and two steak flour tortilla tacos. I would definitely give them an A for taste and an A for presentation as they were served with grilled onions. What really set the flour tacos over the top was the inclusion of frijoles de la hoya(boiled pinto beans) which are amazing when you mix them with meat and salsa. They are vastly superior to most refried beans when used with tacos and other mexican food. The al pastor and steak was pretty good and not very greasy at all like you find alot here in the states. The horchata also was pretty good and deserving of a B. The tacos at Napos definitely cheered me up for missing out on the pyramids, but we would return the next day and actually catch them then.

Pyramids at Peralta, Guanajuato, outside of Abasolo.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Tacos el Texano

The first day I got into Irapuato, Guanajuato my cousins took me to El Texano. That was a place that I had visited on my previous visit the year before. I asked whether or not the owner was actually from Texas and I was told that he was from Irapuato but had given himself that moniker.
Anyways el Texano makes tacos that are bigger than the typical Mexican taco. I believe that night I ordered three carne asada(steak) and three chorizo tacos. We took them to go.

Now what sets taquerias in Mexico apart from alot of US taquerias is that the owner is on site most of the time and is the main taquero and puts a lot of effort into his tacos to the point where it's almost a craft. El Texano was no different as his carne asada tacos were amazing, the meat being juicy and tender but well done. A big plus was the inclusion of frijoles de la hoya(boiled pinto beans) as those will always beat out refried beans on a good taco. He was also nice enough to package the onion and cilantro separately in different baggies as we took them to go. He also included a big plate of grilled nopales which is a standard for him with big orders. The chorizo tacos were also good, not being as greasy as a lot of chorizo tacos can get. As the green, serrano salsa that I had on my tacos was super spicy and probably the second most spiciest salsa I had in all of Mexico. After eating that salsa I feel like a salsa superman and feel that I can probably eat any salsa here at home and not enchilarme. Overall tacos el Texano represented an excellent first night in Mexico and my taco adventure.

My trip to Mexico

In July of 2010 I took a month long trip to central Mexico and one of my goals during that trip was to go to as many taquerias as possible. Me and tacos in Mexico have had a storied past which has included instances of me eating 30 tacos and a torta in one sitting and wandering off on my own and visiting multiple taqueria in one day.
I will attempt to document every taqueria that I visited in Mexico during my last trip and include a picture of the taqueria and pictures of the tacos themselves. After I've gone through all the taquerias that I visited in Mexico during my last trip, I will write about taquerias here in Chicago. I feel that this is especially necessary because of the emergence of so called taco "connoisseurs" who rave about all these "good" taquerias on the north side of the city and say they hate cilantro. Now keep in mind that I am being a snob when it comes to tacos but only because I've been to some good ass places and use those as a basis of comparison.

I will write about the taquerias in chronological order from first to last. Also in my opinion and basing it on central Mexico/DF standards, the standard tacos should have the specific type of meat, a salsa of your choosing and cilantro and onions and made with a corn tortilla. A couple of taquerias in Mexico didn't have both instead just offering onions, raw or grilled or both, but they get away with it because they were good. Now if you're one of those non Mexicans that likes lettuce and tomatoes in your tacos then your opinion does not matter.