Let’s taco ‘bout why you should eat tacos when you’re in San Diego.
Why tacos you ask? San Diego is about a 20 minute drive from the Mexican border. Due to the extremely close vicinity of the country, there is a ton of influence on the cuisine in San Diego. For those non-Spanish speakers, the term, ‘‘San Diego,’ is Spanish for ‘Saint Diego.’
This Mexican influence isn’t new. Not to be cheesy, but here’s a little history lesson: According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, the influence of the Latin Americans began all way back to 1602 when Spanish explorer Sebastián Vizcaíno arrived in La Bahia de San Diego in celebration of the feast of San Diego de Alcalá (St. James.) Spain claimed the surrounding land in 1542; however; the Treaty of Cordoba was signed in 1821, giving Mexico independence from Spain. In,1822 the Mexican flag was raised and San Diego came under the rule of Mexico. Then, after the Mexican-American War, San Diego was established as part of the United States. Clearly, San Diego has some very strong Mexican roots.
So, you must have some tacos when you visit. However, this strong influence means that there are a TON of Mexican restaurants in San Diego. So, we decided to make a guide for the best tacos (don’t worry – both hard and soft) in San Diego based on fixins so that everybody can find one that they like, not matter if you are picky, a vegetarian, a pescetarian, a meat-lover, a foodie, or if you are simply craving some good Mexican food.
San Diego’s Best Fish Tacos
Bahia Don Bravo
Bahia Don Bravo is a “bare-bones Mexican restaurant at the southern edge of La Jolla.” It is a popular spot for breakfast tacos. The fish in the tacos is cooked to perfection with a crisp outside and moist inside. Best of all, many customers have stated that the the tortillas don’t crack. What makes these tacos different from the classic form are a rich crema and shredded cabbage.
Address:: 5504 La Jolla Blvd, La Jolla
Mariscos German is a food truck located in San Ysidro. There tend to be a bunch of Spanish-speaking customers, which means that these tacos must be pretty legit. Their fish tacos are labeled in Spanish as “pescado tacos.” Although this is a food truck, there is seating available next to it. The ingredients in the fish taco include: a corn tortilla, perfectly cooked fish, a great amount of cabbage, crema and pico de gallo. Joe Satran of the Huffington Post, who went on a journey to discover the best fish tacos in San Diego, states that this taco “was the real deal, was the perfect fish taco, and the reason [he’d]’ come to San Diego.”
Location: 3269 Beyer Blvd, San Ysidro
San Diego’s Best Meat Tacos
Tacos de Abobada at Tacos El Gordo
Some customers consider Tacos de Abobada at Tacos El Gordo
to be one of the most authentic tacos in the San Diego area. Their taco de abodada (roasted pork) is one of their most popular tacos. The marinated meat is cooked on a spit and they slice the meat right in front of you.
Address: 689 H St., Chula Vista; 619-691-8848
CHICKEN AND PORK TACOS FROM LAS CUATRO MILPAS
Unlike most Mexican restaurants and taco joints, this restaurant makes their tacos with homemade tortillas. These specific tacos are one of their most popular and are served with crema, queso fresco, and house salsa Their tortillas are fried in lard, which make them taste unbelievable. Also served with the taco is a ton of lettuce with sour cream and cheese underneath.
Tacos de barbacoa at Aqui es Texcoco
Many people consider this barbacoa taco to be the best taco outside of Mexico. The Owner and pitmaster of Aqui es Texcoco, Paco Perez, regularly visits Mexico to taste barbacoa in Mexico’s pit-roasting centers so that he can incorporate the tastes, ingredients, and methods in his own restaurant.. To cook his barbacoa, he uses a custom-built oven, meaning that his pit-roasted lamb is like no other. (Photo: Yelp/Bill C.)
Address: 1043 Broadway Ste. 108, Chula Vista (619-427-4045)
San Diego’s Best Vegetarian Taco
Puesto’s Zucchini and Cactus Tacos
Puesto offers a unique combination of zucchini and cactus tacos that cannot be found in many restaurants.
Also, for all of the health-nuts and tree lovers, they are made using sustainable and local ingredients. This combination is so unique and delicious that you’ll be coming back for more in no time.
1026 Wall St., La Jolla; 858-454-1260
789 W. Harbor Dr.; 619-233-8880