by Kenneth Rosa | staff writer

San Antonio is home to diverse food cultures such as Japanese, Chinese, Indian, Italian and many others. However American and Mexican cuisine is the majority in San Antonio in which you can find several restaurants in different parts of the city. Within the umbrella that is Mexican food, such as tamales, enchiladas, carnitas, quesadillas, among many others, however, the most notable and most popular is tacos. Tacos are a traditional Mexican dish that consists of a corn or flour tortilla topped with a flinging. Different restaurants have different takes on how the dish is made and this week I took a look at five different restaurants in my community to try and select which is the best out of the five. 

“Rosario’s”, a cafe restaurant located in Southtown San Antonio, as well as in San Pedro Ave. Tacos a la Rosarios, which consists of a crisp corn taco filled with your choice of Beef, Chicken or Guacamole (which I selected chicken in this case). Topped with lettuce, tomato and cheese. Served with salsa de molcajete.

“Cocina El Jibarazo Latin Cuisine” which is a food truck set-up for Puerto Rican & Caribbean comfort foods & Cuban sandwiches with outdoor seats. “Our unique 4 Mini Tacos plate is accompanied with chopped onion, cilantro, sautéed jalapeno, and hot sauce with your choice of: Chicken (Pollo), Beef (Asada), and Pork (Carnita)”.

The first place on my list was “ Los Güero’s Taco Diner,” a small establishment location in the North East District on Huebner Rd. The restaurant provides customers with a range of dishes to choose from chicken fajitas, carne guisada, beef enchiladas, as well as their large repertoire of tacos from breakfast, lunch, and their signature tacos. From their menu, I selected “La Costra,” which is a simple breakfast taco topped with bacon, egg, cheese, sausage, and avocado. The dish itself was valued at $5.39, which seemed to be slightly expensive on the cheap scale. When I first saw the dish It looked visually delicious. When I bit into it, I was met with savory goodness, from the juiciness of the meat, to the tastes of the cheese, this dish was the perfect meal to start the day off. Personally, I found it to be worth the amount paid for the dish was full of flavor.

My next location was “Rosario’s,” a cafe restaurant located in south San Antonio, as well as on San Pedro Ave. Their menu consists of a wide variety of dishes such as sopa azteca which is a smoky chipotle tomato soup with shredded chicken breast. Garnished with roasted corn, fried tortilla strips, chile ancho, cilantro and diced avocado. Of the wide variety of dishes they offered, I went with the “Tacos a la Rosarios,” which consists of a crisp corn taco filled with your choice of beef, chicken or guacamole: I selected chicken in this case, topped with lettuce, tomato and cheese, and served with salsa de molcajete. Along with Los Güero’s, their taco was good too, but it had a simpler flavor. The chicken was tender, moist, and plentiful with just enough seasoning in the fully stuffed hard shell corn tortilla and a touch of black pepper. Along with my personal order of beans added into the mix it completed the dish. 

The third location was a local Taco Cabana, located on Marbach Rd, the restaurant is more of a fast food Mexican restaurant. If you are looking for a place to get a quick bite of Mexican food without spending much out of pocket, then this is the place to go. Taco Cabana has a variety of dishes for customers to choose from their menu. I chose a simple flour taco filled with chicken, which had some seasoning. The dish itself was simple, however it was flavorful. The chicken was slightly tender and juicy, but the sauces mixed into the chicken added some depth to the dish. The dish itself is perfect if you wish to spend as little as possible. Out of the five locations this would be on the bottom of the list.

The fourth location on the list was “El Rodeo De Jalisco Mexican Restaurant,” a Mexican restaurant located on Potranco Road. The restaurant’s menu has a long list of dishes to choose from, such as their Steak Tampiqueno, which is a beautifully charbroiled steak topped with a Tampico sauce and served with cheese enchiladas, guacamole, spanish rice and refried beans. From their selection of tacos, I decided to keep it simple and choose their “Crispy Taco Plate”, which is three tacos filled with beef or chicken (to which I selected beef), served with spanish rice and refried rice. The dish was visually simplistic consisting of the items listed on their menu along with a salad. The tacos themselves were juicy, but lacked in depth of flavor. Overall the dish was tasty as well as filling. 

The fifth and final location was a small establishment called “Cocina El Jibarazo Latin Cuisine,” which is a food truck set-up for Puerto-Rican & Caribbean comfort foods and Cuban sandwiches with outdoor seats. Although their menu consisted of mostly traditional Puerto-Rican dishes I noticed that they had mini tacos on their menu. I was intrigued and was interested in the Puerto-Rican take on tacos. The dish consists of “Our unique 4 Mini Tacos plate is accompanied with chopped onion, cilantro, sautéed jalapeno, and hot sauce with your choice of: Chicken (Pollo), Beef (Asada), and Pork (Carnita).” From their choice of meats I selected chicken (pollo), the dish and a rich aroma, and the dish looked delicious, however the first thing I noticed was the cilantro which I was hesitant about because of my personal dislike for cilantro. Despite that, when I took a bite of the taco I didn’t taste the cilantro at all, but the flavor from the caramelized onions, the tender meat, along with the cheese created a depth of flavor. I was shocked to find how delicious the Puerto-Rican take on tacos would be. 

When going to each of these locations, I considered pricing, visual aspect of the taco themselves, as in, the overall presentation, and flavor of the taco from each location. From the five locations, on the top of the list was “ Los Güero’s Taco Diner.” Although it was slightly pricey, not only was it delicious, but with its depth of flavor it’s worth its price. Coming second “Cocina El Jibarazo Latin Cuisine.” Although its menu is mostly dedicated to Puerto Rican and Caribbean cuisine, their take on tacos was delicious and was intrigued by its depth of flavor, and spent less than $3 on this dish. In third, “Rosario’s:” the flavor was simplistic as well the food was filling, however the food overall was delicious. Fourth, “El Rodeo De Jalisco Mexican Restaurant.” Like the others, has a wide variety of dishes to choose from. The dish was visually simplistic consisting of the items listed on their menu along with a salad. The tacos themselves were juicy, but lacked depth in flavor. Overall, the dish was tasty as well as filling, but for their value they provide a large portion of food for a good price. In fifth, Taco Cabana, the restaurant that poses as a fast food restaurant in Mexican cuisine, their pricing is perfect for a fast food restaurant. The dish I tried in itself was simple, however it was flavorful, chicken was slightly tender and juicy but the sauces mixed into the chicken added some depth to the dish. The dish itself is perfect if you wish to spend as little as possible. Each location had their own unique take on tacos, however these are only five locations in the city and there are so many more places for everyone to experience restaurants’ personal take on tacos.

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About The Author

Kenneth Rosa, born in Queens, New York, is a Senior at Johnson High School. This year would be his third year living in San Antonio. He likes to write, read, play video games and aims to be a journalist and a writer in the future.

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