Dinner Out @ Taqueria Mercado

This is going to be a quick "review" for a quick meal.  We were headed down to see the Reds vs. Cardinals, and by parking next to the public library we a) got free parking and b) walked right by Taqueria Mercado (the downtown location isn't on the website yet).  The latter brought an immediate end to our conversation about what bad food we were going to have to pay ridiculous prices for at Great American Ballpark.

The Food:  All we had on this to-go trip was 2 tacos each.  I ordered carne asada and barbacoa, and Sarah had carne asada and carnitas.  I should say right now that we walked all the way downtown and found our cheap seats in the bleachers before we ate, so there is simply no way these tacos were in peak condition.  But, even with that said, these tacos are clearly the real deal.  The carne asada was seasoned well, the barbacoa was moist and delectable, and while the carnitas may have been the most tame of the three, it was still very yummy.  

My most recent downtown taco experience at Senor Roy's Taco Patrol had been a real disappointment, but I was not let down on this attempt.  While the carne asada was a bit dry, and the limes were just about juiceless, in general these were flavorful tacos that I'll eat many, many more of.  They are classic with 2 corn tortillas, cilantro, and raw onion, and the both the red and green salsas they came with were quite tasty and helped add a nice kick as well as moisture.

The Ingredients:  Nothing on the menu about local, organic, or any other notable sourcing information.  When we eat and sit down, we'll definitely have to ask and encourage them to consider sourcing locally.  I've heard co-owner Lourdes de Leon has been generous about donating to local campaigns and non-profits, so hopefully that thoughtfulness will extend to the restaurant's ingredients.

The Story, Setting, & Service:  As I mentioned above, this was a quick in-and-out before going to a Reds game.  The food came fast and we were on our way, so nothing much to say about the service other than it met our basic needs.

The place looks exactly the same as when Javier's was there, and it took me a second to understand that I wasn't supposed to order at the counter in the front.  It'll be interesting to see if/how they distinguish this place in design and decor.

Overall, Taqueria Mercado seems to be off to a good start with solid reviews from other bloggers (Epi-ventures and get in mah belly, amongst others) and a good reputation in Fairfield to build off of.  It's close enough that I'll be walking there for lunch in the near future, and hope they'll be able to stick it out for the long haul.

Taqueria Mercado on Urbanspoon

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