What's in a name? That which we call a taco would, by any other name would taste just as kick-ass. Sorry, but Cheap Bastard's deep, deep love for Tacos La Banqueta, formerly Tacos El Guero, got us thinking about Romeo and Juliet. And butt crack. Whatever it's called, the joint's at 4500 Bryan St., 214-823-1260.
Butt crack count: 1 People speaking English inside La Banqueta before I showed up count: 0
It's official: Tacos La Banqueta has my favorite street tacos in Dallas. Before you go all angry taco-lover on me and start Darth Vaderly screaming, "Noooooooooooo! Tacos El Guero has the best tacos in Dallas, the Dallas Observer Best Of Dallas® issue says so!!" know this: Tacos El Guero changed its name to Tacos La Banqueta a while ago.
Yes, I've been to Fuel City. I like it. In fact, I like many taco places in Dallas. But the al pastor tacos + the overall vibe of the place makes Tacos La Banqueta my most favorite taco place.
When I pulled into the packed-with-construction-workers parking lot of La Banqueta and saw the bars on its windows, I was immediately excited. Every delicious street taco I've ever had in Dallas came out of a restaurant with bars on its windows. It's gotta be part of the street taco recipe. "Two corn tortillas, cilantro, onions, green sauce or red sauce, awesome meats, metal bars."
La Banqueta is tiny. The place is barely big enough for the kitchen, and here I was, never-been-here-before-couldn't-be-whiter-white-chick messing up their rhythm.
I had read online that if it's your maiden voyage at La Banqueta, they'll give you a free taco. The tacos here are only $1.35 each, but free is cheaper, and they were already weirded out by my presence there ("Where's this bitch's construction vest?") so I asked:
Me: Hi there. It's my first time here and I heard you give a free taco to ...
Guy: Free taco? OK. I'll give you the beef.
(Note: Instantly added, "I'll give you the beef" to list of best phrases ever heard.)
In addition to the great free beef taco (double-corn tortilla, blazing hot off the grill), I also had the chorizo taco (spicy, greasy, great with the green sauce, better than hugging a dozen puppies) and the al pastor (one bite and angel Whitney Houston started singing, "I Will Always Love You"), plus a Mexican Coke, to go.
All told, my total was barely over five bucks. And I got to see at least three-quarters of a construction worker dude's entire butt crack while I waited for my food. Best deal ever.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.