Restaurant of the Week: Tacos Tequila Whiskey

Easily one of the best places for tacos in town, Arcadia’s Tacos Tequila Whiskey has won a whole host of awards, and after you sample their delicious tacos and cocktails, you’ll quickly understand why.

This Colorado transplant has been named one of the five Best Mexican Restaurants in America by The Daily Meal and 10 Best Taco Spots in the U.S. by the Huffington Post. The prestigious Bon Appetit named them one of the 50 Best New Restaurants in America, and Thrillist named them one of the 21 Best Mexican Restaurants in America. The list goes on….

You want local accolades? Well they did also bring home the Arizona Taco Festival award for Best Seafood Taco. (The crazy part of this accolade is that it’s only the third or fourth best taco on the menu.) Long story short, it’s safe to say that these tasty tacos come with a lot of acclaim. So do they live up to the hype? Without question.

Everything on the menu at Tacos Tequila Whiskey is made from scratch, and the quality and inventiveness of the tacos place it right up there with the premier taco spots in the Valley, places like CRUjiente, The Mission, and Taco Guild. The stars of the menu are definitely the two pork options, the Pork Belly “Agridulce” and the Carnitas taco. The former consists of sweet and sour braised pork belly, candied garlic, cabbage, and cilantro slaw, topped with a braising jus. The latter has crispy roasted pork, pickled red onions, and an avocado crema. Both are mouthwateringly spectacular.

The rest of the selection doesn’t disappoint either. The Carne Asada (citrus-marinated skirt steak, avocado, diced onion and cilantro, cotija cheese, and lime) proves that you can take something that everyone has tried a thousands times and elevate it beyond routine commonplaceness. And that award-winning fish taco (with Denver–chipotle and beer battered fish, slaw, avocado, pineapple guacamole, and pickled red onions)? Don’t worry. It’s certainly worthy of its title as Best in Town.

Not a meat eater? Don’t fret, as the Vegan (black-bean hummus, grilled corn, pico, masa-fried avocado, creamy avocado tomatillo salsa) and Queso a la Plancha (griddled cotija cheese, avocado, roasted tomatillo salsa, lime) may not have any trophies to their name, but each are also fantastic by any metric. In fact, one of the best things on the menu is the brussel sprouts appetizer, or Repollo Tiernos (“Little Cabbage”). Fried and topped with lime, spicy homemade seasoning, and cotija cheese, they make for a fine meal in their own right.

Other standout appetizers include the Chicken Chicharrones (fried chicken skins with salsa casera) and Queso Fundido con Chorizo. Perhaps the best queso in town, the latter consists of gooey melted pepperjack and savory chorizo; served with warm freshly made chips, my mouth waters thinking about it.

So that covers the “Tacos”, but what about the other two words in the title of the restaurant, Tequila and Whiskey. We’re proud to report that there is an abundance of fine selections of each on the menu, while the lively atmosphere, funky decor (check out the massive, multicolored painting of Frida Kahlo) and open architecture of this Arcadia hotspot make it a great place to stop by for happy hour or solely for libations. The mixologists are skilled, the cocktail menu solid (great margaritas as is necessary for any upper-echelon taco spot), and there is a strong selection of beers as well.

Ironically, the must-try cocktail doesn’t contain either of the aforementioned spirits. The cheekily named Pinche Sodas contain house-made liqueur and fresh juices, and are just the right amount of sweet and eternally drinkable. We recommend the strawberry one, the perfect after-work drink to enjoy alongside some queso and a taco (or five).

As if you needed added incentive to check out Tacos Tequila Whiskey, I should mention that their “street” tacos are very generous in size and all competitively priced between three and five bucks. Furthermore, the Happy Hour menu — which runs from 3 to 6 PM nightly and all day long on Mondays and Thursdays — contains tons of great deals like $3 beers, $5 margs and Pinche Sodas, and a trio of killer $3 sliders (Beef, Chipotle Shrimp, and “Sloppy Jose”).

In summation, it’s easy to see why Tacos Tequila Whiskey is so highly acclaimed and we strongly encourage you to check it out and see for yourself.

To view the complete Tacos Tequila Whiskey menu, visit tacostequilawhiskey.com.

ty-fahlman-author-bioAbout Author Ty Fahlman

The former Managing Editor of Jetset Magazine, Ty Fahlman has earned a stellar reputation for his probing, introspective interviews of celebrities, as well as his in-depth profiles of resorts, restaurants, and destinations. With over 150 articles published, Ty has ghostwritten for New York Times bestselling authors and celebrities, and given thoughtful and in-depth profiles and interviews of dozens of A-List celebrities including Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, and Leonardo DiCaprio. He currently lives in Scottsdale, Arizona but travels as much as he can.

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