Nothing grinds our gears quite like somebody who consistently misfires lines from Will Ferrell movies as a stand in for a witty response. We get it, 60% of the time it works every time, but you can’t replace an entire repertoire of humor with Ron Burgundy quotes. That being said, we’ve detailed this grievance as an apology (and a warning) for what we’re about to say: Bar Takito is like a tuxedo T-Shirt - it wants to be formal, but it’s here to party.
Bar Takito is serious food, not a hole-in-the wall taco joint. It’s a shared plate Mexican/Central American/South American fusion restaurant with an interesting spin on traditional dishes. From halibut ceviche to polenta with ham and kimchi, Bar Takito steps out of the box to deliver unique food with serious flavor. And when they say shared plates, they mean it. No more fending off your culinary territory, as there’s plenty of food to go around in apps, entrees, and sides.
While the food says “serious,” the space is down to get down. The drink menu is twice the size of the food menu, and the drinks are boozy and delicious (we’re partial to the refreshing cucumber margarita with a salty, spicy rim). The entire space is colorful, bright, and loud, and the staff is bubbly and warm. Come on a Thursday night to really fire things up with live music. You might have to talk-yell, but it’s still a good time. You can even make it the last stop on your night out for the Friday/Saturday Late Night menu that makes us wish we lived nearby. We’re positive that it would dominate our homemade “late night” fare of half frozen Annie’s burritos.
Our only reservation about Bar Takito is the price, specifically of the tacos. Paying $16 for an order of tacos doesn’t sit well with us. Maybe we’ve become spoiled. Maybe we’ve become accustomed to cheap tacos, and it’s not really fair to the taco world. But it’s like paying $0.99 for an iPhone App. Even though logically it makes sense and financially it’s not a huge burden, it just feels wrong. But if you can shell out a few extra bucks and are looking for a good time with some good eats, pony up to the bar with some friends and grab a few margs. You won’t be disappointed.
Purple discs of potatoes drizzled with a spicy cheese sauce and garnished with pork belly and onions. The potatoes are crispy on the outside and the sauce provides a good amount of cheesy kick.
When we see a bevy of tacos on a menu, we expect a side of chips and guac as well. But social norms be damned, Bar Takito doesn’t have chips, guacamole, or traditional salsas available. This is the substitute, and it’s just okay. The salsa portion was pretty small, and the bread was pretty crunchy.
A must have shared starter of grilled tender octopus in a light olive oil, parsley, garlic, and cayenne chile spices with lemon potatoes.
Rice with choclo corn, which is extra big kernel Peruvian version, and pickled vegetables. We’re a sucker for anything with choclo corn, but besides that, this dish is fine. It won’t knock your socks off, but it’s an acceptable side.
Usually restaurants have a clear winner for the title of Favorite Taco. But Bar Takito is a house divided where half prefer pork, and half prefer beef, and we’re in the braised beef camp. Flavorful, hearty, yet delicate beef with cheese, pickled red onions, cilantro, and crunchy peanuts in a beer tortilla. They tend to run out, and we’d stockpile them if we could.
The silver medaler taco with smokey pork, avocado, pickles, and a chile-mezcal sauce.
"Cheese taco" gives us visions of dry white tortillas and shredded cheddar microwaved for 45 seconds. Our low expectations were blown out of the water on this one. The cheese is substantial and has protein-like consistency, and it’s paired with avocado, pickled jicama, and a peanut sauce. We know it sounds weird, but we promise it’s good.
Lightly battered fish, basil, herb custard, and crispy rice for texture. Give it a little squeeze of lime, and you’ve got yourself a pretty darn good taco.