Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Tacos El Rey

-Eating like a Mayan King in the Windy City

A while back there was a local alderman on twitter who asked if there were any Tijuana style tacos to be found in Chicago. I replied that no there was almost certainly not any and then someone else replied to me asking how I could know for sure when there's so many taco spots around town. I explained that while it's possible a new place had opened I hadn't seen any personally and while I haven't visited every taco spot in town I've gone to the majority and I'm always looking out for new options including the popular style in Los Angeles that's been given the description "Tijuana style". This is used to describe tacos filled with smoky carne asada and thinly sliced adobada which is what they call al pastor in Baja. But what really makes this style "Estilo Tijuana" is the dollop of bright green avocado salsa that comes standard on each taco. I don't recall personally seeing the practice of painting tacos green when I was down in Tijuana but it's been popular in LA for a while now.

Newly Opened on the East Side 

I knew Tacos El Rey was doing TJ style tacos as soon as I saw their ad on insta (like quesabirria it stands out the on the gram). I figured it would be a place in California or somewhere not here but I clicked it anyway just to see where they were located and to my surprise they were in Chicago. Over on the East Side to be exact. To my knowledge this is the first TJ style taqueria to hit the city. 

Lunch Spread at Tacos El Rey 

The practice of wrapping tacos covered in avocado salsa like In-N-Out wraps up their burgers has become popular around LA and like quesabirria it's gone boom so you can expect to find these trendy tacos by you sometime soon. When ordered “con todo” they come with cilantro, onion, and a few spoonful's of avocado salsa. I tried carne asada and adobada. No charcoal grilling here but a spit of marinted pork was up and running. The tacos were better than the torta which I was hoping might be something similar to Tortas Washmobile in Tijuana which some call the best torta in Mexico. Not the first area I expected to find Tijuana style tacos in town but there will likely be more places coming. 

Steak and Adobada Tacos at Tacos El Rey 

Tacos El Rey 
9625 S Ewing Ave
Chicago, IL 60617
(773) 359-6007
Website

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