Every time I drive by Taco Loco it is hopping with people enjoying
a casual meal on the street front -- so it came as no surprise that
the line was out the door even on a Sunday afternoon.
I stood in the sun for a moment and pondered the daily specials
written on the white board out front. Lunging at yet another
opportunity to try a calamari dish, I instantly confirmed that the
Blackened Calamari Salad ($9) would be on my list. By the time I made
it to the front of the line I had decided on not one, but three
dishes to try, all for me. Everything looked too appealing to turn
down, so I just pretended I had two other friends who would be
meeting me for lunch. Yeah, they should be here any minute now ...
Though I had to repeat my order several times over the loud music
inside, the kitchen got the message and I waited less than five
minutes for my food. After the food appeared, the plates made a stop
at the condiment bar, where I was offered the choice of salsa or
I started off with the calamari salad and was happily rewarded
with a salad that was much more than a starter. The calamari was
plentiful and covered in a spicy batter that was thankfully cooled
down with a bite of fresh lettuce doused in cilantro-lime dressing.
After the salad, I hit up the first of my two entrees: the
blackened mahi mahi quesadillas ($7.85). The fish was fresh in these
simple tacos, one packaged in a white tortilla and the other in a
blue corn tortilla.
Saving what I've heard is the best for last, I aimed my taste buds
toward the tofu mushroom burger ($4.25). The last time I had tofu was
during a one-week health food kick in college and I admit, I haven't
been too fond of it since. I was apprehensive, but when I took a bite
I was surprised that, not only was it flavorful, I actually wanted
more. And in that one moment, my perception of tofu was redefined.
The burger had bite. It was spicy, so I added more mayo and pulled
the reins on the medium-spicy salsa I had been liberally applying.
It's a shame my friends never showed up to meet me for lunch, I
think they really would have enjoyed the food. Oh well, I'll just
have to schedule us another