By Lisa Bloom
Most cultures have something that’s sandwich-y…if you believe the tale, ever since a peckish Earl of Sandwich, desiring to keep playing cards uninterrupted, slapped some meat between two slices of bread, we Westerners have had a love affair with portable food. Then there’s the gyro, the falafel, the shawarma, the Panini and who knows how many more. The variations are endless. The Mexican version of this moveable feast is the taco. It’s street food, it’s the food of the commoner, and it’s at its best as casual fare. Many have tried to make them trendy, but if I’m being honest, the traditional makes it happen for me.
There are several theories of the origin of the taco…the most prevalent is that it was an invention of convenience by Mexican silver miners in the 18th century. Others posit that the Mayans are responsible, with historic mentions dating back to the 16th century. Tacos moved from Mexico into the American Southwest as folks moved north and the mainstream American franchising of the taco is courtesy of Glen Bell of, you guessed it, Taco Bell.
The origins of Taco Tuesday are somewhat murkier and, suffice to say, it’s a relatively new phenomenon that basically gives all an excuse to chow down on the delicacy that is the taco. As you’ve seen on our calendar, many establishments in our fair city offer up their tasty tacos every Tuesday, reasonably priced and plentiful. I love my own food and I cook for myself almost every night, but sometimes when I’ve spent the day cooking for others, I just need someone to cook for me.
I’ve made the rounds…I’ve been adopted for the evening by loyal Elks for their members-only experience; I’ve hit Marias, The Club Car, The Auburn Alehouse, El Agave, Taqueria La Herradura, the Red Frog and Joe Caribe. And yes, I’ll admit it, I have been known to hit the drive-thru at Taco Bell when in search of late, late night sustenance, though usually not of a Tuesday.
This last Tuesday I was at the Alehouse, dining on a combination of pork and chicken, enfolded in their envelopes of corn, chased with a margarita provided by the ever smiling bartender. As always, the place was jumping, adding to the experience. If you have a hankering for a taco, these don’t disappoint, and there’s no getting around it, the beer is always cold, flavorsome and abundant. There’s a taco in this town for everyone. So this Tuesday, go forth and taco!
Lisa Bloom, Owner: A Window Opened