Lucky Taco Tuesday – Barrio Cafe PHX

The Dish: Tacos
The Place: Barrio Cafe
The Location: NO RESERVATIONS First Come, First Served 2814 N. 16 Street Phoenix AZ 85006
The Chef:  Chef Silvana Salcido Esparza

If you’re a taco aficionado, you certainly know Barrio Cafe.  If you not, you need to know Barrio Cafe!  Chef Silvana has delivered an exeptional experience for us Arizonans and all who come to visit throughout the year.  Chef Silvana grew up as a bakers daughter in central Californa learning from her grandmother and alongside her parents. I’ve always thought there is something very special about people who love to bake and understand the chemistry of cooking.  That attribute along with the assumed love of cooking must have been the building blocks and foundation to this chefs wonderful ability to bring all regions of Mexico right here to Phoenix.

On Tuesday, we ventured out to find some off-the-chart tacos to represent the day in all its glory.  And we found the tacos that achieved just that!  One of the things any foodie looks for outside of a great restaurant are the parking spaces, or lack there of.  Pulling into the back side of Barrio Cafe immediately became apparent of the demand these tacos generate.  I was fortunate enough to have Chef Silvana niece helping me the day I visited.  As today I was on a mission to find great tacos, I asked her what was her favorite taco.  She replyed with the shrimp tacos, also known as Camaron with TecateTM beer battered shrimp.  So, I asked if she might be able to request a flight of tacos so I could experience all four.  And to my delight Chef Silvana came out and said hi and accommodated my request making this Taco Tuesday my Lucky Taco Tuesday.  I devoured this flight of Carne Asada, Pork, Shrimp, and Fish tacos, they where fantastic! Everyone one them presenting a unique flavor profile and experience to the point it had me feeling as though I was visiting different parts of Mexico!

For your reading pleasure (and salivation purposes), here are the menu descriptions…Camaron with TecateTM beer battered shrimp topped with shredded cabbage and avocado slices, garnished with a Baja aioli, Carne Asada with grilled tenderloin steak topped with shredded cabbage, queso fresco, Yucatán-style pico de gallo and avocado slices..  Cochinita Pibil with their acclaimed pork, marinated in achiote and sour orange, wrapped in a banana leaf and slow roasted over night, topped with pickled red onion and Yucatán-style pico de gallo.  And the Pescado with TecateTM beer battered sh topped with shredded cabbage and avocado slices, garnished with a Baja aioli.

By the way, Chef Silvanas niece and I totally agree on the shrimp tacos….but it was so hard to pick just one as a favorite (for the record!).

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Erik Merkow
Founder and CEO at Az Food & Wine
Erik: a father, writer, entrepreneur, son, photographer, corporate guy, friend, brother, and foodie wine guy



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