I am always looking for good authentic tacos, so when foodie friend, latin-culture-lover and east-sider Alise told me these tacos were the best she knew of, I ran on over to try. Carniceria Guanajuato is, obviously, a Mexican supermarket, the east-side sibling of the original Pike Plaza store. However, there is a food court of sorts where you can grab authentic tacos, tortas, burritos, and more at VERY low prices.
I will say that if you aren’t a somewhat adventurous eater, this is not the spot for you. The food may be familiar, but the eating area can’t be described as clean by any stretch of imagination and the likelihood anyone will speak English is vague. This is a place you go for food so tasty it’s worth the possibility of foodborne illness or eastside crime.
We ordered chicken, steak, and lengua tacos and a chicken torta. The tacos were the biggest I’ve ever seen; there had to have been 1/3 lb of meat in each one. They were served with generous amounts of cucumber and lime on the side and topped with raw onion. For future reference, I’d probably order 2 maximum if I were very hungry. The wheel wasn’t reinvented here, but these tacos were completely delicious.
Look how much meat!!
My torta was the real showstopper for me. Different than other tortas I’ve had, theirs featured tomato and pepper cooked with the chicken and was more like a warm pot pie than the usual cold sandwich. I can’t say I like it more or less than Tortas Dominguez y El Cubanito or Super Tortas, because they are really two different beasts. I love them both, and, sitting here writing, I crave them both simultaneously.
This one inexplicably reminds me of my mom and grandma’s cooking. If anyone else (who isn’t even kind of hispanic) goes and feels this bizarre taste nostalgia, please let me know so I can stop feeling crazy.
I will also say this for Carniceria Guanajuato-it is literally cheaper than Taco Bell. We got three tacos, a torta, and 2 cans of soda for $11.50. Neither of us finished our food, despite being substantially hungry. It’s interesting, it’s cheap, it’s delicious, and it stimulates a part of town that needs stimulating. I’ll be back in a hurry.