Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Falls Church: Taco Bamba

Being an avid taco lover I was thrilled to stumble upon Taco Bamba on one of my many google searches for food. Taco Bamba is owned by Chef Victor Albisu, owner of the well known Del Campo in DC (just looked at the menu, wow - need to go asap...their brunch is swoon worthy). Taco Bamba is Albisu's take on Mexican street food, and according to one of my Californian friends, he definitely hit the spot.
Not only does Taco Bamba offer tacos, but also a selection of sides, sopas, tortas and other miscellaneous items. I went with a big group of people - about 10. It's important to note that there are no tables, just a bar along the wall and some chairs outside. This is not the place to catch up with friends - this is a place to eat delicious tacos. 
We all got a random assortment of tacos. Tacos are either $3 or $4 a piece, half being specialty tacos with toppings for a $1 more. I got two $3 tacos : barbacoa and carnitas and a $4 taco: Taco Bamba Skirt Steak, Chorizo, Grilled Guacamole, Chicharrones. I also got a side of grilled guacamole and chips. Definitely better then Chipotle's (gasp).
The favorites of the night were varied, but the chicken, taco bamba, tongue, goat, mushroom and barbacoa were all talked about. Basically if there is a meat you like, you will most likely enjoy the taco. I recommend playing it safe for 2 out of 3 tacos and then getting something different for your third. I did not do that, but I did try one of my friends goat tacos and mushroom tacos. I could not be convinced to try the tongue but the 4 people who were daring enough to all said it was really good.  
They offer three different salsas, the verde was my favorite!
Now, I really liked these tacos, however the "gringa" in me should have gotten her act together and ordered the tacos on flour tortillas instead of the usual corn (totally possible, I asked after my meal) and the tacos would have made it from like to LOVE. Guess I have to go back again, darn. 

Would I come back? YES

2190 Pimmit Drive
Falls Church, VA
-it's behind the Whole Foods shopping center
Taco Bamba on Urbanspoon
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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Ballston: Rustico

After walking up and down several flights of stairs to help a friend move out of her apartment we decided that we needed some substance and headed over to Rustico for one of their delicious and totally original dishes, carrot hummus (past review OCT12).

We decided to split a couple of appetizers for our meal instead of getting entrees. 

Carrot Hummus spiced lamb, crumbled feta, pita: I'm really not sure how to describe the wonderful flavors of this dish but if you like hummus, this is a milder version, but still flavorful in it's own way. Topped with lamb chili and crumbled feta, it really is perfection in a dish. One I need to learn to recreate ASAP.
Fried Green Tomatoes bacon jam, avocado ranch, arugula: This dish had so much potential but unfortunately the main component was not up to par. The actual tomatoes were sliced so thin that all you could taste was the breading. The bacon jam was everything you could have ever hoped it would be and more and the avocado ranch was delicious. 
French Fries herb and garlic: The garlic flavor was there but the fries were not fried the first time around, they were limp and soggy. We sent them back and they brought us new ones which had the appearance of being fried but were not cooked in the middle. Huge fail.
Service was seriously lacking this time around (not rude - just pretty much ignored us), and they royally screwed up the fries twice (how hard is it to cook some darn fries??). We didn't want to complain and get a 3rd order so we ended up just leaving them untouched. Our server was probably just having an off day...or we were sitting in the bar area drinking ice tea so we probably weren't on his high priority list. 

Would I come back? Yes. Although service wasn't the best, they weren't rude and their carrot hummus with lamb is really spectacular - a must order dish. I am also really curious about their pizza with a chick pea crust so a visit in the future will probably happen. 

4075 Wilson Blvd
Arlington VA
Closest Metro: Ballston 
Rustico on Urbanspoon

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