Empellon Tacqueria

It took me almost four entire days from arriving in New York before I finally got tacos. After an abortive attempt to visit friends in New Jersey, where the culinary highlight of hanging around the Port Imperial ferry terminal was eating a Mrs Fields cookie, I was seriously hungry, so when we arrived at Empellon Tacqueria I could have eaten a piñata.

I almost missed the restaurant though, thinking the signboard outside that declared ‘Hora De Amigos” was the name of the place, rather than the time. Close shaves, and all that.

Inside it’s dark and quite crowded; a long table runs the length of the room, with the bar next to it, and then we were all sandwiched in a table at the back wall, next to the toilets. There is a whole other room behind this one, which we saw afterwards, with nobody in it. Sunday is maybe not the biggest day for them.

To start, we had guacamole, accompanied by a never ending supply of chips delivered in small wooden boxes, and seven different pots of salsa, six of which were pleasant and one hot enough to simulate the experience my mother had at Mama’s Mexican Kitchen in Seattle. I coughed, I spluttered, I drank the pain away.

But anyway: tacos. Tacos, tacos, tacos. They have a different special every day (Sunday is marinated pork and turnip, sounding strangely like something you’d find in a menu in Hong Kong) plus eight other choices. There are only two vegetarian options so I hoovered up a couple of mushroom tacos before anyone else had spoken, and then sat around looking winsome.

You could eat something other than tacos, but the one person who did wasn’t happy with her dish of queso and queso. Eat tacos. It’s a tacqueria, that’s what it’s there for.

Service was excellent (I’m still waiting for some of that famous old-time New York City rudeness) and then we left, for the ultimately disappointing desserts of Magnolia Bakery. But I’m not a member of the Sex And The City cast, so I’m not fully qualified to discuss that.

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