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Top 7 Innovative Taquerias in the US

Americans love Mexican food. In 2014, there were more than 54,000 officially licensed Mexican restaurants operating in the US, making up almost 8 percent of all restaurants in the country.  It should therefore come as no surprise that America has some seriously innovative taquerias dishing out everything from gourmet tacos and tortas to inspired chimichangas, nachos, and sopes. Today we will venture out of Arizona to explore 7 of the most innovative taquerias in the rest of the country.

  1. Los Guachos Taqueria, Northwest Columbus, Ohio

Customers flock to this college town favorite for the freshly sliced meat prepared overnight in chef owner Carlos Nanato’s secret marinate. The al pastor tacos are made from pork shoulder slow roasted on a spit with a pineapple above the meat. The recipe is inspired by taquerias common across Mexico City, but the salsa served alongside is 100 percent unique.

  1. Taco Nazo, multiple locations in California, including South El Monte and Azusa.

Taco Nazo serves up one serious fish taco. The signature dish is made from sizeable pieces of fresh Alaskan Pollack, breaded in corn meal and flour, fried, and placed upon two locally baked corn tortillas. The charred chile guero served alongside provides a smoky, sweet contrast to the battered fish crunch. We prefer to slice it up and place it atop the taco.

  1. La Taqueria, Mission, San Francisco, California

Owner Miguel Jara is behind the counter of this local favorite every single day. The Carne Asada is his personal recommendation, consisting of a grilled, never steamed tortilla, Monterey Jack cheese, cuts of charred sirloin, Jara’s own salsa, Mexican sour cream (thinner than its American counterpart), and topped off with a sharp garlic sauce. The salsa provides a serious kick, while the grilled tortilla gives the dish a crunch not found in other tacos.

If you are dying to get your hands on one of these works of human ingenuity, but just don’t have the cash in hand, consider car title loans.

  1. Bell Street Burrito, Buckhead, Atlanta, Georgia

Upon entering Bell Street, customers will notice that the menu includes “regular” and “special” burritos. The regular menu features Mexican standbys like steak, shrimp, pork, ground beef, and chicken, However, we go for the specials, which feature the best-selling chicken & broccoli burrito. Though not exactly authentic, Bell Street transforms the dish into a true Mexican masterpiece by loading it up with cheese, beans, and sour cream.

  1. Manny’s Tortas, Powderhorn, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Manny’s is torta heaven.  The Mexican sandwich menu includes everything from ham, steak, and chicken. However, we always follow owner Manny’s personal recommendation:  the Milanesa, made from lightly breaded steak, onions, chipotle mayo, and guacamole.

  1. La Estrellita Poblana, Westchester Square, Bronx, New York

This Bronx outpost is famous throughout New York for its al pastor style pork and pineapple tacos. The juicy pork is marinated overnight, topped with shredded lettuce, sour cream, queso fresco, and of course grilled pineapple, all for $3 a taco. The steak enchilada suiza, another personal favorite, is made from tender, charred steak, copious amount of quesadilla cheese, and topped with La Estrellita’s famous enchilada sauce.

  1. Taqueria & Restaurant CD Hidalgo, Rogers Park, Chicago, Illinois

Named after a picture perfect city in north central Mexico, this Chicago favorite is a true stand out in a neighborhood teeming with excellent food options. Located in Roger Park’s “Taqueria Row” along Clark Street, the family owned restaurant is famous in both the city and suburbs for its handmade and hand pressed huaraches, sopes, and quesadillas, made with your choice of everything from crispy asada, al pastor, and chorizo; to vegetarian favorites like mushrooms, cactus, or pumpkin blossoms. The red and green salsas served alongside have some serious kick and are not for the faint of heart.

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