Sunday, October 19, 2014
Tacuba - Three Dudes Brunch Out
It's not often that I skip out on a new and interesting meal in Astoria, but Dan definitely one-upped me on this one. Read and salivate as he brings you the play by play of the new brunch offering at Tacuba Cantina in Astoria.
Today, when I asked your Fooditka where I should go with my buddies for some brunch (yeah, three dudes going to brunch, big whoop, wanna fight about it?) she suggested Tacuba. She then also “suggested” I cover it for the blog. Here goes:
Tacuba is a new Mexican cantina that opened on the corner of 35th ave. and 36th st. where 5 Napkin Burger was. In fact, upon entering, I was struck immediately that the layout is exactly the same as it used to be. The décor is different of course; tequila bottles lined up above the bar instead of whiskey, a few sombreros on the walls, and a more rustic finish give it a Mexican cantina feel, but the interior fixtures are all pretty much the same. The familiarity is actually nice, as I’ve spent many a happy hour in those exact same confines and it’s nice to know I still can, albeit with a different style and flavor.
I love Mexican food, as I’m mostly gluten-free (yeah, mostly gluten-free, big whoop, wanna fight about it?) and as long as you’re dealing with authentic corn tortillas and chips, it’s like cheating it’s so easy. So as much as I love it, I’m euphorically overjoyed by terrific Mexican food, and gut-wrenchingly devastated by a sub-par effort. I’m also prone to hyperbole.
Drinks - Fortunately for me, the food was delicious. Also fortunately for me, it is happy hour at the bar from 12-8 p.m. on Saturdays, so naturally we sat at the bar - $5.00 drafts, $6.00 sangria and margaritas. Anybody knows that some cerveza goes well with three dudes eating Mexican brunch. Full disclosure, two out of the three dudes got a glass of sangria - also delicious.
Chilaquiles - There is a regular menu and a special brunch menu, and we all ordered from the brunch menu. I got Chilaquiles, but instead of eggs mixed in with all the tortillas and sauce and greens, I got chicken. It was well worth the $3.00 upcharge. The sauce was the perfect amount of tangy and citrus-zesty, the chicken was moist yet lightly charred outside, and the chip layer on the bottom soaked everything up the exact right amount.
Chicken Empanadas, Huevos Rancheros, The Burger - Paul got an order of chicken empanadas, and a plate of Huevos Rancheros that looked pretty awesome and Jamil got the Mexican burger, which also looked great. As we were three dudes eating brunch, we didn’t try anyone else’s food, so I can’t tell you exactly how theirs was, but they both seemed to really enjoy. The empanadas looked incredibly tempting and I would have had one for the sake of the blog, but alas…mostly gluten-free over here.
Service and Cost:
The service was also very good, the bartender was attentive, and the food all came out quickly and hot. With the empanadas, the three mains, one extra basket of chips and salsa, and mmpth-fmmf beers and sangrias, we got out of there for about $30 per person.
So to recap - decent atmosphere, fantastic food, good service, and moderate pricing. I’d have to give it 3 Mmmms.
Tacuba Cantina Mexicana - 35-01 36th Street, Astoria NY 11106
R Train to Steinway Street or N/Q Train to 36th Avenue