Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the results of the first ever Girard Avenue Taco Throwdown!
The contestants: recently opened Shifty’s Taco in Brewerytown, and very recently opened Union Taco in Northern Liberties. An intrepid group of tasters and I subjected ourselves to the one-order-of-each approach to the entire taco menu (plus guacamole and salsa, for good measure) on offer at both places. The goal? Not to crown a winner (because anyone should be happy to have either shop in their neighborhood), but to highlight the best tacos–and alert you to some missteps–at each. Overall, we had great experiences with friendly and helpful staff at both places. Through an extremely scientific tasting, note-taking, and discussion procedure, we reached consensus on some favorites. Honorable mentions are as follows:
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UPDATE: Apparently, this really is a “Two Dollar Taco Tuesday” deal, because while the tacos might come two per order, Union Taco is still selling them at $2 apiece. Which means $4 per order.
Union Taco–the new spot from chef Nick Farina at 7th and Girard–just announced two new weekly deals.
The first (as totally given away by the headline) is a $2 taco deal every Tuesday whereby chef Farina will choose one of the tacos from his menu and sell that style to all comers for two bucks. The possibilities are impressive, with Farina offering everything from ground kobe with house made jalapeno queso, pico de gallo, pickled jalapenos and greens to oxtail with cabrales, caramelized onions and pickled jicama or pork cheeks al pastor with honey-braised pineapple.
The other deal Union Taco is offering is a $10 flatbread Friday–wherein (you guessed it) you can score as many flatbreads as you like for just $10 a pop. And seriously? Ten bucks for a black truffle flatbread with confit chicken, mushrooms, goat cheese, pesto and sun dried tomato is a nice way to kick off the weekend.
Union Taco [f8b8z]
Halloween falls during the week this year, which means you have a choice of two weekends to don your freaky costumes and roam the streets, but there’s only one Dia de los Muertos. So pour one out for your fallen homies at any of the following…
La Calaca Feliz
2321 Fairmount Ave
Tim Spinner is offering a four course Day of the Dead tasting menu for $29. It begins with tamal de rana (slow braised frogs legs and green chili), moves to cemita sliders, then pork cheek mole coloradito with blue cheese grits and mustard greens, finally ending with traditional pan de muerto. At Cantina Feliz, the $28 menu (with the option to add a beverage pairing for only $12 more) is completely different and looks equally tasty. Red chili duck tamales with Dunks Ferry Dunkelweizen by Neshaminy Creek Brewing, anyone?
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Chef Nick Farina who owns Verdad in Bryn Mawr is opening Union Taco, a 20-seat taqueria at 712 W Girard Avenue. And on Wednesday, October 23rd he will be giving away free tacos between noon and 2 p.m.
Union Taco will be open for lunch and dinner seven days a week. The taqueria will stay open late on weekends.
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