For those whose affection for south-of-the-border snacks goes way beyond Taco Tuesdays… here’s a list of our favorite crunchy munchies in the greater Charlotte region. If we missed your cherished restaurant, give us a heads up in the comments section below so we can taco-bout-it.
1511 East Blvd.
Price: $9 for three of the same taco.
Personal Note: I’ve tried almost every taco on the menu here and they have all been pretty darn tasty. Please remember: this joint serves items as soon as they’re made, tapas style, so don’t expect for your whole party’s meals to be served at the same time. Added recommendation: get the Queso Blanco Dip ($7.50 vegetarian or $9.50 with meat). It’s cheese-pull bliss.
1301 East Blvd.
Price: All tacos are served a la cart, $4 each (except for Hongos Tacos, $3 each).
Personal Note: My go-to is their Cochinita Pibil Taco, which comes with achiote braised pork, pickled red onion, habañero hot salsa (HOT), and cilantro. I’m a big fan of heat and their habanero salsa has some serious kick.
3201 North Davidson St.
Price: Tacos range from $10.95 – $12.25.
Personal Note: Good sized-portions with plenty of varieties to choose from (they even offer chicken and tofu for non-seafood folks). Each taco plate is served with your choice of black beans & rice, Baja rice, refried beans, spicy avocado pasta salad, Mexi-slaw, Nopalito salad, or our seasonal side.
Price: Mix and match 2 tacos for $11 or 3 for $15.
Personal Note: Tacos come with your choice of corn, flour, crispy tortilla shells or “protein style” in Bibb lettuce cups. They are served with cilantro garnish, lime wedges, tortilla slaw and your choice of beans and Mexican rice. I personally love the Pato Carnitas; they’re different and quite tasty (duck slow cooked in Manteca, then grilled golden brown and served with pickled onions, avocado and jalapeno tomatillo salsa.
6401 Morrison Blvd. #8a
Price: One for $7.50 or two for $11.50.
Personal Note: This Tex-Mex eatery has some pretty unique tacos. One of my favorites is the Turkey Club Caritas (slow cooked turkey, sliced avocado, shredded iceberg, jalapeno bacon, tomato and avocado ranch on a wheat tortilla), but I have also heard great things about their Chicken Fried Steak and Shake Down Shrimp varieties.
445 South Main St., Davidson
Price: $6.25 for two tacos.
Personal Note: This is always a fun spot because you can pretty much make up your own tacos with your choice of any of their burrito filings (carnitas, guacamole, pollo asado, carne deshebrada, chorizo, vegetales asados, fresh tomatoes with Mexican rice, or Pure de Papas). In addition to the burrito filling options, they also offer fish tacos. Every Wednesday you’ll find some inventive specials that won’t be found anywhere else.
204 North Tryon St.
Price: Order any 3 for $12, served with your choice of one side (lunch).
Personal Note: Taco choices include steak, chicken, pork belly, cartnitas and shrimp. I love the fact that you can order a mound of French fries to feast alongside your Tacos. #BestOfBothWorlds
101 S. Tryon St., Ste. 14
Price: Al Pastor Tacos ($12).
Personal Note: I will be honest and note that these tacos are pretty tiny… but they are jam packed with flavor and come with your choice of one side (get the sweet potato waffle fries). This is one of my favorite spots for people-watching in uptown so make sure to sit on their patio when the weather permits.
200 East Bland St.
Price: Taco plates range from $10 – 12
Personal Note: I’ve personally only been to this Mexican joint twice, but both times were a delight (insert freshly made margaritas and a plethora of hot sauce choices here). Tacos are served on locally made corn tortillas (gluten free) with rice and your choice of refried or black beans. We’ve ordered their Carne Molida and Bang Bang versions – both encompassed distinctive flavors and tasted delicious. (Editor’s note: The lettuce cups here are fantastic.)
900 Music Factory Blvd.
Price: Combo #3 (2 tacos) or Combo #4 (taco + enchilada) for $7.95.
Personal Note: Combo meals come with Mexican rice and beans and your choice of taco meat. Make a night of it and attend a salsa lesson on Tuesday nights at 10 p.m. Hit the dance floor and whip up an appetite for some authentic Mexican fare.
16203 Northcross Dr., Huntersville
(Note: there are multiple locations, but this recommendation is based from the Huntersville restaurant.)
Price: Tacos are $1.99 each (a la cart), you can also get them in combinations for $8.79.
Personal Note: This is my go-to Mexican restaurant in Lake Norman. Every time we have visited I have left fully satisfied (and stuffed to the brim). The wait staff here is very friendly and they all speak fluent Spanish, if that’s something you are looking for! Tacos come with soft corn tortillas with your choice of meat and are topped with cilantro and onions.
333 West Trade St.
Price: Street Tacos range from $9.95 – $12.95 and come with three tacos.
Personal Note: This joint has quickly climbed up to the top of my taco chart for Mexican cuisine in Uptown. They are pretty popular for lunch, so service can be hit or miss depending on how slammed they are. However, the tacos are surely worth the wait if the restaurant is filled to capacity. My favorite tacos are the Coca Cola Carnitas and Grilled Steak (which comes with a layer of crispy fried cheese…. Yaaaas!).
715 Providence Rd.
Price: Tacos start at $4 each (a la cart), add a side for $2.
Personal Note: The tacos here have some clever names and are fun to order. I like to get a variety of 3 and taste a little bit of everything. Some of my favorites are That’s Not a Snowflake (Tofu), It was the Dukes (Pork Belly Carnitas), and You’re Going The Wrong Way (Marinated Chicken).
Price: Tacos range from $2.95 – $3.75 each.
Personal Note: I’m a big fan of their Authenticos Tacos, which come with your choice of protein and are topped with cilantro, diced onion and a lime wedge. They also have a salsa bar that cannot be missed – order a side of tortilla chips with your meal and go to town, my friend.
Price: $3.50 each (a la cart).
Personal Note: Hands down, the best cauliflower tacos I’ve ever had. Grilled cauliflower finished with buffalo sauce that’s topped with celery root slaw, bleu cheese crumbles and scallions. Other unique assortments include their Chicken Tinga, Chana Masala and Pork Belly (which comes with kimchi).
8625 Monroe Rd. #D
Price: See in store for details.
Personal Note: A hidden little gem inside a non-flashy storefront. They offer real Mexican cokes, horchata and prices that cannot be beat. If you’re looking for a swanky upscale scenery – this is not your spot. However, if you’re in the mood for genuine Mexican cooking I suggest you go visit them on your next taco quest. Side note: get the guacamole.
2917 A Central Ave.
Price: 4 taco combo for $6.95.
Personal Note: Guests get their choice of chicken, steak, al pastor (pork), tongue or chorizo tacos that are served with onions and cilantro. They will sometimes have specials and I encourage you to try them out.
210 East Trade St.
Price: Two Taco combinations start at $8.99.
Personal Note: This upscale canteen offers delicious Mexican fare in the eventful EpiCentre. If you’re going to a game or Blumenthal performance, this is a great spot to satisfy those taco cravings and enjoy a bit of nightlife. The Red Chile Chicken Taco’s chipotle crema is super delish and I also recommend trying their Shrimp Jalapeño Bacon Tacos for an unusual kick.
2433 South Blvd.
Price: 2 for $7 tacos or 3 for $10 tacos
Personal note: This taco joint is the only place where I’ve seen Macha Beef Tacos on the menu — braised beef with dried chili peppers, onions, coffee, chocolate, cinnamon, cloves, lime, cerveza, tomatoes, charred onions, cotija cheese, pickled red onions and scallions. The vegetarian tacos are suppose to be awesome (a trusted friend informed me), and guests have their choice of house-made corn or flour tortillas when ordering.
Photos: Jess Bentley