In search for some breakfast on the Southside, I happened upon Tellez Tamales y Barbacoa off of General McMullen. There were swarms of cars going in, so I decided to check it out.
This ordering process satisfied my need for efficiency as an Industrial Engineer. There was one line and as you walked in, the employees were ready to help you make your breakfast concoction. The restaurant is as much a market as it is a breakfast joint – you can either order your tacos a la carte, or, you can order barbacoa by the pound along with tortillas in bulk (prices were listed for up to 5 dozen!) along with some bunuelos or avocados to take home! People just kept coming in and coming in and it was particularly popular with the service men and women.
You could tell that this was a place where a lot of regulars visit, because the staff would engage them as soon as they walked in through the door. It also seemed like a Saturday/Sunday tradition for many families because a lot of the regulars had their children with them. Even though I was not a regular, they still made me feel welcome!
I ended up ordering a barbacoa and machacado taco along with a bottle of Big Red (when in Rome…). I didn’t get too crazy and asked for the “all meat” taco (if you don’t say this, you may get the eyes, brain, etc. which I am told is very tasty, but something that doesn’t appeal to a gringo like me). The barbacoa was very flavorful and had a nice thickness to it while being incredibly tender. The chili complimented it nicely, but it was frozen, so I had to let it thaw out.
The machacado taco had an overpowering taste of butter that got in the way of the flavor of the meat and vegetables. One of my rules is that if the name of a restaurant specifies what they do best (tamales and barbacoa in this case), then you should probably stick to that on your first time there. I violated that rule, and was disappointed by the machacado taco. On a return visit, I am either getting another barbacoa taco or a tamale!
If you are on the Southside and looking for some good grub quickly, I would highly recommend Tellez Tamales y Barbacoa.
Value: 9/10 (pretty good value, especially if you buy in bulk)
Atmosphere: 8/10 (simple line with some booths set up)
Service: 9/10 (very quick to get you through the line, the table I sat at hadn’t been bussed though)
Salsa: 8.5/10 (chili was good, however, I had to wait for it to thaw out!)
Taste: 8/10 (be sure to order the barbacoa, it is great; stay away from the machacado it was not very good)
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