Would we go back:
2416 Central Ave NE
• Shrimp Fajitas $11
El Taco Riendo is one of my favorite places in NE. We have gone there to pick up lunch many times...it essentially has become our Chipotle. But this is the first time I had eaten in the restaurant. Because I was eating in I had the fajitas which just seem more like an eat in meal to me. The were great as expected. In fact the best I have had. Usually when we get lunch there I order three tacos. I have yet to have one I have not liked. There burritos are chipotle size, but much better in my opinion. And I was a big fan of Chipotle until El Taco Riendo opened.
• Quesadilla Gringo $7.50
We have been to El Taco Riendo for lunch several times, and we finally tried it out at dinner time. The place itself is little more than a storefront on Central Avenue less than a block south of Lowry Avenue. The décor reflects little has been done in terms of leasehold improvements, but the bench seating and tables are comfortable even if well-worn. The service is good, but equally humble; you order at the counter, and they deliver food to the table (they could use a high chair and maybe a booster seat).
The food itself is worth a trip from further afield. The quesadilla gringo contains a spicy, juicy, tender, succulent pork. I cannot guarantee the actual preparation, but there is a mouthwatering description at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al_pastor. The large tortilla filled with pastor and pineapple, delicious even if it is on the greasy side. The side tomato-onion-cilantro salsa was fresh and delicious. The guacamole was also fantastic. On prior visits, I have never been disappointed by their tacos and burritos.
El Taco Riendo is a sure-fire second date place, when you want to impress your date that you are worldly and value-minded.
January 16, 2011