We love a good taco here at Cafe Society, and we're willing to hit the pavement all over town to find a good one. While the streets of Denver are filled with street tacos, only a handful rise to the top.
Here are Denver's five best:
5. La Villa Real The pair of trucks that comprise the La Villa Real enterprise command a constant crowd of patrons, some of whom stop by twice daily for the gorditas, burritos and tortas. But many of the faithful frequent the old-school loncheras for the tacos, hot tortillas loaded with spicy carne asada, velvety cheek meat and spongey tripe, sprinkled with cilantro and onions, and then doused with salsa ladled from plastic bins.
4. El Taco Veloz We'll happily take any of the offerings at El Taco Veloz, a brightly hued spot on Federal Boulevard. But we eagerly go back for round after round of the tacos al pastor, made from pork sliced off a spit, sprinkled with nubs of pineapple and doused with fiery salsa.
3. Taco Mex This boxy red-and-white restaurant on East Colfax, which I review this week, serves up a vast menu of Mexican dishes -- menudo, chile rellenos and breakfast burritos. But the taco list is the star, a board that includes cheek, tongue, birria and spicy longaniza sausage as well as tacos al pastor, carved from an outdoor spit of roasted pork in the parking lot.
2. Guadalajara Authentic Mexican Buffet It's easy to get distracted by the buffet line, brimming with vats of menudo, posole, chile rellenos, carne asada and just about any other Mexican dish you can think of. But visits to this Aurora restaurant are best started with a trip to the back corner window, where the cooks will make you an order of tacos de trompa loaded with fat-laced chunks of pig snout, braised until tender, topped with onions, cilantro and tangy salsa.
1. Carniceria y Taqueria La Flor de Michoacán Weekend nights at this taqueria attract a crowd of patrons outside the parking-lot tent that pops up over a grill and a stack of pineapple-laden pork for tacos al pastor. Here cooks load the meat onto griddled tortillas, then add cilantro, onions, radishes and splashes of salsa. The resulting fare rated our Best Street Taco award in the Best of Denver 2011.
An honorable mention goes to the tacos al pastor at Toluca Mexican Restaurant in Westminster.
More Best of Denver Lists: - Denver's five best restaurants for blind dates