Craft Beer and Traditional Mexican Lamb Barbecue Tacos
Restaurant: Aqui Es Texcoco
Where: 1043 Broadway Chula Vista, California
Cost: $2.85 to $18.50 | Special Family Pack- $50.00
About: Taqueria Aqui Es Texcoco is unique among all the other taquerias in the San Diego region because they specialize in Traditional Mexican Lamb Barbecue.
This style of traditional cooking entails slow roasting meat for up to eight hours in an underground fire pit covered with leaves from the maguey, also known as Centuryplant.
Aqui Es Texcoco uses a specialized oven in their kitchen to replicate the slow roasting process. Lamb is the most traditional meat to cook this way and is considered healthier than pork or beef. Lamb roasted this way is rich in flavor, mild in taste, and quite savory.
What I Ate: I ordered the Tacos de Sesos and a small Lamb Broth (with Mexican rice and chickpeas mixed in with the broth) as a side. The Tacos de Sesos were served with a diced onions and cilantro mix, fresh limes, and two salsas (roja and verde). By themselves both menu items were sensational, but paired together they were divine. Whatever you order when you go there, make sure to try the Lamb Broth.
What I Drank: There’s a good selection of micro and macro beers, foreign and domestic, to choose from for pairing beer with your meal. I chose Ballast Point’s Sculpin IPA to pair with my tacos. Sculpin served in its bottle with the tacos was classic Cal-Mex.
West Coast IPAs were born to be paired with tacos. The hop bitterness of the beer cut through the richness of the lamb and scrubbed my palate between bites. And citrusy/grapefruit flavors inherent in Sculpin complemented the roasted and seasoned meat as well as the lime squeezed onto the meat. Sculpin was quite refreshing with this meal.
Likes: First, the service was stellar. It was friendly, fast, attentive, and efficient. Second, I liked that the prices were affordable for the high quality food. Third, the food is amazing and I loved knowing it was traditional. Fourth, the restaurant is sparkly clean and they play pleasant music.
Verdict: In the sea of taquerias in the San Diego region, Aqui Es Texcoco is an island. Here you will find a rare style of cooking that is centuries old: authentic and traditional Mexican Lamb Barbecue. And there are numerous beer styles available to pair with any of the savory dishes.