The first time I ever set foot in a Taqueria was on the Lower East Side in NYC. I was promised a delicious margarita and tacos that I wouldn’t soon forget, and that’s exactly what was delivered; so you can imagine my delight when I learned that a second location was located only five minutes away in downtown Jersey City.
I was relieved to find that everything from the margaritas to the menu was exactly like my first experience in the city. What you can expect from Taqueria is bona fide Mexican with a Fight Club Twist (minus the dark basements and shirtless brawls)–all will be fine as long as you abide by their set of rules that are laid out to maximize an authentic experience.
Once you have the rules down pat, it’s time to flip the menu over and decide what Mexican delicacy to fill up on. My personal favorite way to kick off a meal at Taqueria is with one of their delicious margaritas–the kind where you can taste the tequila and the citrus actually comes from fresh lime juice, as opposed to lime syrup that leaves you in a painful pucker. The guacamole is also a great starter to add to the crispy tortilla chips and spicy salsa that you get just for sitting down.
A surefire way to get ultimate entree satisfaction at Taqueria is by ordering some of their tacos. Maxing out at $3 dollars a pop (most are $2.50), options include pork, steak, cactus, fish, lamb, and more. All tacos come on a soft (but not flimsy) corn tortilla topped with onions, cilantro and salsa. Get a side of crema fresco (not sour cream) to top them off if that’s your style–but remember, no substitutions.
A different but equally delicious menu item of the taco persuasion is the tostada. Served on a flat, crispy corn tortilla, your favorite ingredients are stacked out in the open. Choose from pork, chicken, bean, or avocado. Tostadas are topped off with beans, lettuce, cheese and salsa.
Another standout item from Taqueria’s menu is the tortilla soup–truly one of the best bowls I’ve ever had. The abundant flavors are spicy and sweet with big chunks of vegetables and crispy tortilla strips occupying the creamy base.
While rules tend to weigh us down and hold us back, Taqueria is a place where I don’t mind being a little restricted. If they’re going to say “no” to a handful of dishes and décor choices, at least they serve up options that make it easy for diners to say “yes.”
236 Grove Street
Jersey City, NJ 07302