Go Now: Taco Junky Ups the Ante on Boulder’s Hill
– BY CAROL W. MAYBACH
Stop by Taco Junky, the three-month-old eclectic taqueria on the Hill in Boulder, and you’ll find yourself with a dilemma: With every bite out of the kitchen just as delicious as the next, ordering is no easy task.
Street tacos come stuffed with proteins ranging from ancho cocoa-rubbed bison rib-eye and slow-roasted lamb to Caribbean curry chicken. But the best options are found on the brunch menu. Here, chef William Dabney cooks up plated entrées like the Pot-Toc-Benny with poached eggs, pickled peppers, sliced avocado, and a lime-cumin hollandaise sauce. Tender potato-plantain fritters take the place of English muffins. There’s also the exceptional Sun of a Biscuit with flaky buttermilk biscuits topped with three sunny-side up eggs, breakfast potatoes, loads of crispy bacon, and chorizo gravy.
Drinks, which star an array of infused tequilas and vodkas, also shine. Most noteworthy is the Lucky 7 Bloody Mary. The cocktail, which is made potent with cucumber vodka, doubles as brunch in a glass with a garnish of bacon, cheese quesadilla (yes, really), pickle, Edam cheese, pimento olive, celery, lime, and grilled Serrano pepper.
Taco Junky—easily the Hill’s best new restaurant since the opening of Cafe Aion—offers another alternative for diners looking to venture off the Pearl Street Mall. The eatery replaced the longtime favorite Mamacita’s Restaurante y Cantina with a remodeled space and a richly flavored brunch and dinner menu. Taco Junky’s general manager Toula Georgakopoulos recognized the restaurant’s beloved past (she even threw a going away fiesta for the old spot and saved the restaurant’s front door) but she knew that the place needed to stand out in a neighborhood known for its cheap eats. Taco Junky more than delivers.
Taco Junky Kicks Things Up in Boulder
– BY JEFFERY STEEN
So you’re a taco junky, eh? We might have just the fix for you.
Not two months ago—on February 22, 2015 to be exact—Boulder’s University Hill welcomed a new neighbor: Taco Junky. Owners Evey and Mike Caravello recently set roots down in Boulder after living in Chicago and decided that what the U District really needed was a casual taco spot that served college students and Boulder natives alike. While at first blush, TJ may sound like nothing more than just another fast food fix, it’s got some seriously potent surprises up its proverbial sleeve.
Toula Georgakopoulos—the curly-haired, bright-smiled, and gregarious GM—sums up the concept in one simple phrase: old meets new. “We’re not a Mexican restaurant,” she stresses. “But we use the classic tortilla as a way to combine global flavors in a few small bites.” Sure enough, the menu spans nine different tacos (rotating seasonally) that showcase everything from coconut guacamole (yes, that’s a thing) to piquant kimchee. There are myriad salsas and guacamole to start the meal, too—like the charred tomato-chipotle Quemando salsa and the inventive bacon and lentil BLT guacamole. They’re all dished up with piping hot, salty tortilla chips made fresh every morning.