Edit 6/22: I’ve decided to lower my ranking on Taqueria Downtown, the quality and consistency in food has been reduced over the year. It seems unfortunately corners are being cut. The tortillas can sometimes be wet, single wrapped or sometimes double wrapped. The meat is also inconsistent even the spices range form very hot to just plain bland. I have reduced my 9/10 rating to an 8/10, and removed them from my Top 5 taco spots. The dining experience can sometimes be so hit or miss, I’ve had a 9/10 all the way to a 6/10 experience; with fish tacos being cold in the middle. Add the long wait with a cramped space begins to lead a frustrating experience, there are other places to try. The low quality may be related to the new owners location in the Newport area of Jersey City.
Original review Below:
La Taqueria Down town has easily become my go to spot for Tacos in Jersey City, New Jersey, it also ranks the highest on my current list. The tortillas are the authentic size, made of corn. The variety is also fantastic, which helps to set it apart from many other spots. Taqueria sources quality ingredients and I have yet to be disappointed by them or by the 12 different types of tacos they offer. The meat they use for each type of taco has always been amazing top quality in choice and how it is prepared. Eating in the restaurant is great, there are two locations both on Grove Street. **edit 1/25, the take-out location is not as good, the tacos are prepared differently wait for the restaurant location I’d rate the take out as a 6.8.**The larger restaurant (corner of Grove Street and Grand) is a great spot for a night out (yes the Margaritas, and Sangria are very good) be warned any day of the week you may have to wait. The wait is well worth it for the atmosphere and delicious Mexican food. There is also an outdoor patio in the back, well lit with umbrellas at each table, and candle lit at night makes for a wonderful date night in Jersey City or a great evening with co-workers. It should be well known their other menu items are also amazing and quite filling.
- Solid Taco Review Score: 8/10
- Taco Price: $3.75 for one.
- Location: Jersey City, New Jersey
- Strengths: Variety and quality
- Other Things to Try: Tostadas, Margaritas, and Sangria.
Here’s my break down of what I have tried:
Pescado – (Fish Taco) – one soft tortilla served with shredded cabbage, fresh cilantro made with their homemade salsa. The salsa is the same salsa that comes with chips, it’s mild with a lot of flavor. Fish tacos are not always my first choice when it comes to tacos, but the occasional fish eater will love these, I thought they were phenomenal.
Nopalitos – (Cactus Taco) – you may want to try these purely based on the conversation that will ensue after telling everyone you had cactus and loved it! Cactus as a food is actually quite common in Mexican cooking, the cactus used is called prickly pear or Nopales. I would best describe the taste of cactus somewhere in between a green bell pepper and a green bean with a slight tart flavor. This is a fantastic vegetarian option that doesn’t taste anything like a compromise. The cactus taco is served with cilantro, onions, fresh cheese, and a mild homemade sauce
Suadero – (Beef Flank) – Another great taco at Taqueria Downtown is the Suadero, it’s beef, that been slow cooked, its quite good and worth a try if you haven’t had it. It comes from the upper rear leg of the cow, it doesn’t really have a grain in the meat like steak, and can be a little chewy in texture. The Suadero tacos at Taqueria are topped with fresh cilantro diced onion, and a mild sauce.
Barbacoa – (Lamb) – *sauce is very hot* The barbacoa is easily one of my favorites here and I have become a big fan of lamb in the past few years. Be aware that the sauce on these have quite the kick. I love hot sauce, but I’m always sure to have a glass of water nearby. The barbacoa tacos are also served with diced onions, fresh cilantro, a radish and a lime. The meat itself is tender pulls apart beautifully and is perfectly seasoned.
Chorizo – The chorizo tacos at La Taqueria Downtown are ground up chorizo sausage, served with diced onions and cilantro, simple but very tasty. Be aware this taco is a little oily, but so so good.
Picadillo – (Ground Beef) – The ground beef tacos are served with small chunks of stewed/baked potatoes, peas, as well as a mild sauce. This is another simple dish here with a lot of flavor and not a crazy amount of heat, a great choice for tacos here.
Carnitas – (shredded Pork) – The carnitas tacos here will always leave you with a smile, great flavor, well prepared and seasoned pork tacos, all topped with diced onions, a mild sauce and served on a corn tortilla.
Bistec – (Steak) – *sauce is very hot* A very good cut of steak, the sauce is very hot, it is the same as what comes on the barbocoa taco. The steak Taco at Taqueria Downtown comes topped with onions cilantro.