This week we’re taking you to another Canterbury restaurant, Tacos Locos. Anyone who recalls our trip to Budapest knows we found a fantastic restaurant there by the same name. This English version, sadly, does not live up to the original. Let’s explore how.
Let’s start with the prices. They seemed a little high, given the cuisine that was on offer as well as the general look of the restaurant. It’s very bright, very Mexican, and more than a little shabby. When you’re reading a laminated placemat menu, you don’t really expect to be paying £10.95 for enchiladas. You choose the type of meal and then the filling, so I chose as follows:
Sun-dried Tomato tortilla baked in the oven, topped with an Enchilada tomato salsa and melted cheeses, served with Mexican Rice, Sour cream, Guacamole & Black bean salsa.
Three Bean Chilli (v)
Black, Kidney & refried Pinto beans combined with Roasted Peppers & Pico Salsa.
The food wasn’t as great as expected. The enchilada was tasty enough but the rice was a little crunchy or tough in places – basically it had the texture as if it had been microwaved. If you’re a Mexican restaurant and you aren’t serving fresh rice, I don’t know how to help you. The side-salad was very unspectacular and had the kind of dressing you would expect in a chain hotel, totally inappropriate for a Mexican meal – where’s my salsa? That’s just black beans in a salad, not a salsa. The large plate also belied the size of the rice serving as the indentation for the food is actually much smaller than the outer rim.
We also ordered horchatas, which weren’t up to the standard you would get in Wahaca or the ones we drank in Budapest. They were refreshing to drink but a little watery and not as tasty as usually expected.
We did try the dessert, and it was probably the best part of the meal.
Banana & Nutella Chimichanga £4.95
Banana & Nutella hazelnut spread wrapped in a cinnamon tortilla & fried until crispy and golden. Topped with crushed nuts, drizzled with chocolate sauce and vanilla ice cream makes this a family favourite…. Deliciously moreish.
It was a little on the small side again, but in this case the price was fair, and it was tasty.
Overall, I have to say that this was just a sad case of a restaurant that made us feel a little dirty just to sit there. Everything was dirty and dusty around us, and it was obvious not much care was taken of the premises. There were sombreros sitting on the tables for random customers to wear, as if the ambiance needed even more of a disjoint from the price points. The server was slow, barely spoke English, and seemed uninterested even when taking our orders. We vowed never to go there again about five minutes into the visit, which is just not a good sign. Someone needs to take this place over and give it the rejuvenation it needs to serve a good meal in a fun atmosphere.