There was a time in our lives when we once considered Taco Bell to be really good Mexican food. It was during our high school and college years, when money was scarce and our late night cravings were curbed by a ritual “run to the border”.
After college, we started dining at various chain restaurants claiming to serve authentic Mexican cuisine, but they were no more than glorified Taco Bells. As the Big Ragu’s favorite band Survivor said, “The Search is Over”. We are officially in love with a little restaurant on East Third Street in Dayton called TAQUERIA MIXTECA which means “damn good Mexican food” in Spanish.
Taqueria Mixteca isn’t a fancy restaurant, it is one of those places that you may shoot a glance at while driving by. They don’t advertise, they don’t have a fancy dining room — we don’t even know if they have a bathroom! They do however, have a drive-thru. What the place lacks in character is compensated for by a diverse group of diners, with a great menu to match. The majority of dishes give you the option of ordering the kind of meat you want, ranging from chicken to tripe. They have three different homemade sauces and delicious homemade salsa. There is something for everyone…even you vegetarians out there!
On the day of our visit, Superfry and the Big Ragu ordered multiple tacos including: Chicken, Chorizo, Beef Tongue, and Ground Beef. We also decided to try the Pork Quesadilla and Enchiladas. We agree that these might be the greatest tacos we have ever eaten due to one factor — simplicity. While other places load on the cheese and sour cream, the only ingredients that you find here are meat, cilantro, onion, and a lime wedge all placed on a double corn tortilla.
Since we are two spicy individuals, we decided to try each one of their three homemade sauces and were not disappointed. One of Superfry’s favorite moments of this taco trifecta was making the Big Ragu try a Beef Tongue Taco. This was not an easy feat as The Big Ragu is picky about his meat. He avoids steaks at any cost claiming textural difficulties and is the only Italian Superfry has met who hates meatballs. Neither one of us enjoyed the Beef Tongue Taco, but it was quite amusing to see the Big Ragu squirm.
We didn’t know what to make of the Enchiladas when they brought them out because when we think of Enchiladas, we think of them topped with white cheese sauce. These were naked as the day we were born and had a red-orange glow. Again, the taste of the enchiladas spoke for themselves. Authentic, simple and the flavors were unique.
One of the biggest surprises was the pork quesadilla. The flavor was intense and fresh. It was probably our favorite item of the night.
The price for our meal was a great value. Our bill was only $21, a great price for all of the items we tried. Taqueria Mixteca was recommended to us by people who are from Mexico, or have spent a lot of time south of the border. Sure the El Toro and El Rancho Grandes have their place, but this is the closest thing to AUTHENTIC Mexican that you will find in the Dayton area. So get over to Taqueria Mixteca… VAMOS !!