I have to admit that I have always made fun of people who think that Mexican food is just about tacos, but the variety of tacos in Mexico City was impressive and even though I wanted to try other dishes such as mole and tamales, I ended up eating A LOT of tacos.
My favorite was the rib eye tacos at El Califa. We headed here for a late night snack after the Black Eyed Peas concert, and like any popular late night eatery in the world, there was a long line of drunk people waiting to sink their teeth into these delicious tacos. I suppose taquerias are considered fast food joints except it’s actually faster and everything is cooked a la minute. The waiter brought us four different salsas (verde or green, which is the spiciest, tamarindo, roja or red, and asada) and of course, a bowl of limon (they only really have limes so limon is the word for limes, not lemons). Basically, for the rib eye taco, what they do is cook the thinly sliced rib eye and oaxaca cheese separately on the flat top, stick them together onto a tortilla and voila, you have a piping hot, cheesey, delicious taco. We also ordered grilled onions and avocado to accompany our tacos. I had the chuleta (pork chop?) taco as well but I had two of the rib eye tacos because it really hit the spot!
My friend took me to a market near Polanco where we ate breakfast at four different tacos and quesadilla stands. They cost 8 Mexican pesos each (a little less than one US dollar). The plastic plates were lined with plastic bags to eliminate the dishwashing process and payment was made based on an honor system- customers state how many they ate and get charged based on that. Although these stands look homogeneous at first glance, each has unique condiments and provides different cuts of meat prepared using various cooking methods. At one stand, every taco was topped with fried potato strips (that tasted like mesquite bbq…), at another they had pickled radishes with chilies and at another, the only meat they served was from a goat’s head. My favorite at this market was the taco de lengua (cow tongue). Paired with fresh fruit juice, this was easily one of the best breakfasts I’ve had in my life.