Three weeks into this taco journey, and I’m already taking shortcuts. This is supposed to be about exploring San Antonio, about getting the hell out of downtown, my comfort zone. However, deadline was fast approaching and I needed a taqueria ASAP. So I went to an old standby, The Little Taco Factory on McCullough Avenue (there’s one in Kirby, too).
This time, I brought my good friend Zach Garza, who happens to be an executive chef most recently at Nao, the Culinary Institute of America’s restaurant at the Pearl. I mention Zach’s credentials to give this post some credibility. A culinary expert and a dumbass walk into a taqueria and this is what happened.
At The Little Taco Factory, there’s this red hot sauce. It’s a brilliant Corvette red. Seedy. Tangy. Perhaps slightly smoky. And it will look good daubed on anything: a taco, plate of enchiladas, a lover. It’s probably my favorite hot sauce among the local taquerias. Zach found out it’s made from red jalapenos, which are ripened green jalapenos.
The other hot sauces are wonderful, too — the green, probably serrano; the tangy brown, probably roasted tomato — but the salsa dojo rises above them.
In terms of tacos, I best enjoyed the papa chorizo, an excellent combination of well-seasoned potatoes with bits of chorizo heavily sprinkled throughout. Zach’s favorite was the papa ranchera — more well-seasoned potatoes in a well-balanced and deep-in-flavor ranchero sauce. Perhaps the potatoes could have used more color, but the taste certainly was there.
Other taco notes: The weenie, egg and cheese, I deduced is called the Denver here, because we properly identified all of the other tacos in our order. Let’s be clear, this is weenie — not sausage — and weenie rocks. The taco was hot and fresh and all the flavors blended together beautifully.
The chicharron had good flavor with the right chewy texture, although we would have preferred more stew. The chorizo and egg good and not greasy. The bean and cheese a really good bean and cheese.
The one hiccup: The bacon and egg with its bits of kind of stale egg; and chewy, not crispy, bacon.
The tortillas, clearly made inside the factory, had that proper fresh chewiness.
They aren’t lying with the name. The Little Taco Factory is small and has about 12 tables. You order at the counter. And it’s a popular place, so it’s often crowded with people standing around waiting for a seat or to-go order.
OK, now back to exploring.
Little Taco Factory #2, 1510 McCullough Ave., (210) 227-5657
— Worth traveling across town for
— Average S.A. taqueria. Some hits, some misses
— Mostly misses
— Benjamin Olivo
What do you think? Is there a taco I should have ordered, but didn’t? Have any taco news, issues or concerns? Email me at email@example.com.