takito kitchen

"Open B______" - you fill in the blank...leave your answer as a comment...

“Open B______” – you fill in the blank…leave your answer as a comment…

Takito Kitchen. Oh, Takito Kitchen.

Let me just start by saying Takito Kitchen has delicious food, great drinks and an impressive, well-thought out theme. Each taco is mouthwateringly good. The margaritas are dangerously easy to take down. The people who work there are extremely nice. AND it is a cool, hip joint where you can impress your friends.

So, why does it seem like I’m leading up to one big but (not the Sir Mix-a-Lot kind)? Let’s just talk about the tacos first…

The first taco I ate was the crispy redfish. It is served on a hibiscus tortilla with carrot-jalapeno slaw, coconut custard and basil. Sounds great, right? Well, it is. The fish is cooked perfectly and isn’t over breaded. It has a little crunch and zing from the slaw and some moisture and freshness from the custard and basil. Overall, a very good fish taco.

Next, I tried the beef barbacoa. This guy comes on a corn tortilla with queso fresco, tamarind, chayote, peanuts and cilantro. That sounds like a lot, and it is, but it’s basically just a beef pot roast taco with a few ingredients on top. The toppings aren’t very noticeable, but it doesn’t matter. The beef steals the show. It is very tender and juicy. It’s a little sweet, and doesn’t really seem like a taco, but it’s still delicious.

Last, I had the lamb chorizo. This is my favorite. The chorizo itself (who cares about the rest?) is good enough to put on a plate and eat alone. It’s gamy, smoky, spicy, and it’s sausage. It’s perfect. The taco sits atop a corn tortilla and is topped with Brunkow cheese, tomatillo salsa, and jicama. Did I mention that the chorizo is good?

Now, for that butt.

This place is too expensive, especially considering the portions. Most of the tacos are $11 for 3 and they are all tiny. I ate four and a half tacos, plus some appetizers. I don’t even eat four and a half tacos at an all you can eat taco bar. Also, you can’t order tacos a la carte. You have to get them in 3’s. That’s just stupid.

In addition, the salsas are either $3 each, or $6 for three. They are good, but they are very small. They don’t come with chips either. They come with masa and rice crackers. Good try on the ingenuity, but just stick with the chips. They’re good with salsa. I Promise.

As for the drinks….they’re very tasty, but they’ll set you back. Margaritas start at $10. An Old Fashioned costs $15 and a Manhattan is $18!!! They don’t even come with a girl. Arg.

So, in summary, this place has awesome food and is great for people who don’t like their money…

Somebody has a fancy phone with a fancy app...

Somebody has a fancy phone with a fancy app…

The rundown:

  • Location:  2013 W. Division St., Chicago, IL (Ukranian Village)
  • Tourists:  Josh, Julia, Summer, Kelly
  • Tacos sampled:   crispy redfish, beef barbacoa and lamb chorizo (also have pork belly, chicken pepian and brunkow cheese)
  • Toppings:  varies per taco
  • Salsa:  tomatillo pistachio, hibiscus and ghost pepper, and corn puree ($3 ea. or $6.5 for all 3); served with masa and rice crackers
  • Extras:  nada
  • Tortillas:  corn, hibiscus and sesame (depending on the taco)
  • Atmosphere:  farm to table, new-wave, meticulous, “price check on lane 2 please!”, tasty, chipless
  • Price:  $10-$11/3 tacos
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