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Monday, April 23, 2012

Adventures in Taco-Land

Last weekend, I relaxed. This weekend, I ate.

C & I grew up in New Braunfels, TX, a world full of amazing tacos. We satisfied our cravings every Saturday morning with tacos from Los Gallos through our entire Junior & Senior year of high school. To this day, every time we go "home" it is mandatory that breakfast tacos are had in some form or fashion. (I even have Los Gallos' phone number still programed in my phone. Six years after I lived in New Braunfels.)

When me moved to Bryan, TX, the quckie, but awesome, breakfast taco we'd come to rely on to start our weekend was no where to be found. And for six years, we've been complaining about it. Until this weekend.

At the insistence of a few life-long Bryan residents, we decided to wake up Saturday morning with a mission: to find the best breakfast tacos in town. And so we woke up Saturday morning (ignoring the massive amounts of garage sales) & started driving.

We stopped at four places altogether, getting a taco at each place. We rated each location on 5 categories:
(1) Service
(2) Quality of Tortilla
(3) Quality of Hot Sauce
(4) Overall Taco
(5) Price
Three of the places came highly recommended by others, and one was just a spur-of-the-moment turn into a convenient store with "Taquiera" written on its sign. I employed an "equal grounds" controlled experiment, getting only a plain bean & cheese taco at each place, while C employed a more diverse sampling.

We discovered long drive through lines at La Familia (with tacos almost twice the price as the other places), and a Spanish-speaking-only stand at Las Mexicanas. Pictures of dead goats at La Botana, and pinata-lined walls at Tienda mi Ranchito.

The best taco of the day was the Picadillo at Las Mexicanas - but a return visit for fajita tacos that night made us realize that while no one was rude to us, we weren't really welcome. La Familia was over-priced, and had soggy tortillas; and La Botana was good, but not great.

In the end, Tienda mi Ranchito won the taste test. Tucked away inside of a dirty convenient store (which doesn't sell Dr. Pepper), the service was polite & quick, the toritllas perfectly grilled, and the salsa the best of the day. To make sure we had made the right choice, C went back to collect a larger sampling of tacos Sunday morning -- and we found the best Chorizo & Egg taco either of us had ever eaten.

Taco Challenge 2012: Complete.

Now excuse me while I hit the gym....

Have you found a good local place lately?

Hope you had a great weekend!
{Happy Monday}

PS - A few more days to enter the giveaway!


  1. mmm a weekend of tacos sounds awesome! We found a new taco stand here in MD at the back of a convenience store that was both tasty and affordable. Good find!

  2. This sounds like so much fun! I've always wanted to go on a food tour but my husband is not really into food (he could eat a PB sandwich or cereal everyday and be happy). Although... he DOES like ice cream. Hmmmm... I think an ice cream tour would have to be done over the course of a few weeks though otherwise we would have some serious exercising to do!

  3. This is a great post! I just love that you guys went out to find the best tacos. Sounds like something my husband and I would do. :-) Thanks for visiting our blog. So glad you did - we are now following you via GFC. Have a great day!

    Jayme @ Her Late Night Cravings

  4. I am DYING to get home to Cali just to have some LOCAL food... we're in a small town where your choices are commercialized fast foods... taco bell... mcD's... carl's JR.. wah wah wah!

    I want some greasy hole in the wall food sometimes ya know?!

  5. One of the best things about living in SoCal is Mexican food! I don't know what I'd do if I loved in an area where it wasn't authentic.

  6. I'm glad you found a perfect place for both of you! Can you believe I have never ever eaten tacos before? I am curious whether I would like the taste or not :)


  7. Sounds awesome...I think i will make Tacos for dinner now.

  8. Hi Amy!

    Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving such an awesome comment. It's rainy and cold in the East so sadly I had to dust off my boots. I'm glad you found me because your blog is sinfully delightful. I mean, I feel guilty just reading this post and I didn't even have any tacos. Please keep these coming. I can definitely live vicariously through you.

    Simmy P.

  9. That is an excellent idea!! I love the idea of testing area restaurants on the same item- so will be using in the future. And next time I'm in the area I will be trying that place :)

  10. Great idea! But no, haven't found any good ones!


  11. We live in San Antonio and LOVE breakfast tacos, of course we have so many places to enjoy them. My favorite is Comal County Tacos though in Spring Branch, it is WAY to close to my office! Love that you are in Bryan. My husband and I both went to A&M so it is our second home! Enjoying reading your posts and your newest follower!

  12. What a fun adventure! I love tacos! I live in suburbs outside of Los Angeles so we have many places we like, and more to try!

  13. The things I'd do for a real Texas taco right now..they're unspeakable.

  14. I love quesadillas, I have not eaten many tacos to have an opinion of them.

    Thanks for visiting my blog :)

  15. seriously how much fun are yall! love this!

    great post.