One often hears West Coast expatriates decrying the state of Mexican food in New York – and for good reason. Very few eateries here in our fair city live up to the standards set by San Francisco, Los Angeles, and of course, Mexico City. This is doubly true for taco trucks and carts, which innumerably dot the landscape on the left coast in comparison to the scattering of vendors here. Here in Williamsburg, we’re lucky to have several carts to choose from, and my first exploration was the one I pass by most frequently: Tacos Morelos on the Northwest corner of Bedford and North 7th.
What drew me to the cart was its seeming authenticity; more than a few Latino delivery guys stop here to grab a quick bite between trips. And the menu emblazoned on all sides of the cart proclaimed dishes like Pumpkin Flower and Pork Skin stuffed quesadillas, and Beef Tongue tacos. The prices are also extremely attractive – only $2.50 per taco! An even greater rarity, the cart offers free delivery until Midnight every night. I was understandably pretty excited about trying it out.
Unfortunately, my excitement was immediately dampened by the lack of both the Pumpkin Flower and Pork Skin toppings. Though they appear on the menu on the side of the cart, they don’t seem to appear in the takeout menu, so I half wonder whether those are seasonal offerings or are just no longer available. I decided instead to order the Barbacoa (steamed goat) and Chorizo (spicy sausage) tacos, a chicken tostada, and a cheese quesadilla.
Everything was totally prepared to order, and was fairly quickly made. I walked off with all that – plus a Tamarindo Jarritos – for only $13.00 (so it’s even cheaper if you don’t buy a soda).
I started in on the tacos, which were pretty huge for $2.50; each taco was actually wrapped with two tortillas, and then nestled in a small paper plate to keep them all held together. The Barbacoa had a decent gamey flavor, but was a bit too chewy, and my first thought upon biting into the Chorizo was: “where’s the spicy??” How in the world do you make a Chorizo taco not spicy? In fact, when my order was being made, I was asked whether I wanted everything to be spicy and I absolutely said “yes, please!” but it seemed like there was no heat to be had anywhere at all. The tortillas themselves were actually very tasty throughout; they had an excellent flavor and were clearly made with traditional ingredients (read: LARD).
Moving on to the cheese quesadilla, it was pretty much
the most plain of the bunch. Filling, a little rubbery, but good with hot sauce when I added it on my own later. The highlight of the meal was clearly the chicken tostada, which at $3.00 was clearly the best value in portions and flavor. Most impressive was that the fried tortilla on bottom was still crispy even after about 10 minutes in the takeout box.
Overall, I have to say I was satisfied with what I got, especially as I made two
meals and a snack out of it; but I really had to bring a lot of my own flavor to the party in the form of hot sauce and jalapeño salt. Considering that the prices are so low, you’re getting a lot for what you’re paying for, but the cooks could definitely benefit from throwing in a little more salt and spice, especially to add some more heat! Don’t be afraid of the fire, guys!
- cheap, cheap tacos and tostadas. great value for money
- tasty tortillas, very rich and great texture
- authentic and unusual items on the menu
- free delivery??
- not spicy enough, even when one asks for spicy
- not flavorful enough, need a bit more salt and flavor
- authentic and unusual items were not available
[Where: Bedford Avenue and North 7th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211]