- Chips and Salsa
- Carne Asada (Beef) Taco
- Carnitas (Pork) Taco
Date First Visited: May 23, 2012
Price: $2.75 for Horchata (Large); $1.30 for Chips and Salsa; $3.50 for Carne Asada (Beef) Taco + $1.20 for added Avocado; and $3.50 for Carnitas (Pork) Taco + $1.20 for added Avocado.
Note: The Carnitas Taco is #4 on the 7×7 The Big Eat 2012 List and the Carnitas Taco Dorado is #4 on the 7×7 The Big Eat 2013 List.
Tucked away in the heart of the Mission district (1 block from the 24th St Mission BART station) in San Francisco, La Taqueria is known to be one of the best taco joints in town. There are tons of Mexican places in the area, but crowds of locals and tourists are constantly streaming in and out of La Taqueria. The institution has been around for nearly 40 years and has earned its spot as one of the most iconic quick-eat places in SF.
You walk in and walk past the line of hungry customers. From the end of the line, you’ll have about 5-10 minutes to decide what to order as the service moves really fast. The menu isn’t too extensive and mainly has just tacos and burritos. Although the choices are limited, you can count on La Taqueria doing things right and well. Everything is incredibly fresh and it amazes me how they are able to come up with such quantities daily given the rate at which customers devour the goods.
The walls of the establishment are plastered with numerous awards won from all the top foodie publications. If you were skeptical before walking in, this should help cement the fact that La Taqueria is legit. After placing your order, you are handed a number and quickly told to find a seat at one of the wooden tables. Most of the tables are communal aside from the few 2-person tables on the side. A worker from behind the counter will call your number, notifying you that your order is ready to be picked up.
I always tend to quench my thirst with a horchata when I munch on Mexican goodies. It’s typically made of ground almonds, rice, and barley; a great sweet contrast from the savory tacos.
The chips are newly fried and have a crispy crunchiness with every bite. I can’t get over how fresh the salsa is every time I visit. They are generous with the portions, so 1 set of chips and salsa can easily feed 2 people as an appetizer.
At every table, there is a bottle of hot sauce if you like your food spicy and find the normal flavor too plain. The tacos are a bit on the pricier side if you compare to taco trucks or fast food chains, but it’s worth it given the large size and quality of the ingredients. The meat, especially the carnitas featured on the 7×7 The Big Eat 2012 List, is especially flavorful and tender. Your taste buds will thank you as you stuff yourself with deliciousness. Even if you’re really hungry, 2 tacos is plenty to be satisfied. During this specific visit, we didn’t ask for the tacos to be crispy fried (otherwise known as dorados). They fry the inner tortilla and leave the outer tortilla soft. I’ve had it done that way before and highly recommend it if you’re a first timer.
Update (March 30, 2013):
We went back and got the Carnitas Taco Dorado (crispy fried).
1) You can ask for your tacos crispy fried (dorados). I highly recommend this.
2) If you dine in, be prepared to share your table with strangers.
3) If you try the burritos, they do not come with rice.
4) The Carnitas Taco is #4 on the 7×7 The Big Eat 2012 List and the Carnitas Taco Dorado is #4 on the 7×7 The Big Eat 2013 List.
Yelp Review: http://www.yelp.com/biz/la-taqueria-san-francisco-2
4 out of 5 stars. 1,450+ reviews.
2889 Mission St
San Francisco, CA 94110 (map)
Tel: (415) 566-6143
Mon-Sat 11 am – 9 pm
Sun 11 am – 8 pm