Tacos 101 is a brand new Taqueria on the Ryerson campus at Dundas & Church. Now, let’s be honest… it’s all too easy to run up a hefty tab at many downtown taco joints and still be hungry when all is said and done. Chef Julio Campos is aiming to change this, slinging out some of the best-sized tacos in the league. They’re fresh, quick and relatively inexpensive for the portion size ($4 each).
On my first visit, I opt for 3 tacos. The Al Pastor is marinated pork twirling on the gyro spit left behind from the previous Greek restaurant. Garnished with pineapple, cilantro, onion and salsa, this is a winner. Next I dig into the Chicken Adobado, which sees white meat marinated with dry peppers, oregano and lime. It’s holds together well thanks to the dry-rub and would probably travel the best (if takeout is your thing). Finally, I had to try the Fish Taco. It’s often the taco to measure a place by. Tacos 101’s version does not disappoint. Beer battered cod is fried-to-order and garnished with red cabbage, mango, pico de gallo and chipotle mayo. It’s 50-cents more than all of the others, but totally worth it.
I visit a second time just so I can try everything on the menu. I really like their Veggie Taco, as it’s jammed full of Cactus, refried beans, diced tomato, onion, cilantro and cheese. This is #meatlessmonday at its best. Last but not least, I order the Carnitas. The pork shoulder is super tender thanks to being slow-cooked with oranges and a secret array of spices. Garnished with pico de gallo and avocado purée, I truly saved the best for last.
Homemade Salsas (Tomatillo, Morita and Arbol) are on display on the counter with chips for tasting before you commit. Sides include homemade nachos served with either salsa, guacamole or re-fried beans. There is also a nice selection of Mexican drinks to wash everything down… including Jarritos, Jamaica and Horchata.
Primarily a take-away, there’s a counter in the window where 4 or 5 people can stand and eat comfortably. This is the recommended play, as all of the tacos are so loaded with sauces & toppings that they might not travel well. We’re planning on going back with a small crew this week. You should totally join us.