Last week I met up with two of my favorite ladies to catch up on life at one of the latest hot spots in Atlanta. Bartaco began making huge waves with their first restaurant opening on the Westside. Now that they have opened in Buckhead (a little closer to home for me) I plan on being a serious regular. The atmosphere is warm and definitely makes you feel like you’re on vacay at the beach instead of in the middle of large metro area. We lucked up to be going on a warm day when the garage doors were opened up which just added to the overall ambience. The three of us enjoyed ourselves so much we definitely thought about ordering more tacos once we’d already completed our meal. We just didn’t want to leave. So as a head’s up, next time you’re at Bartaco, look for me at the bar.
A good evening out is always kicked off with the right cocktail. Bartaco takes theirs seriously while also having some fun. Every corner of the bar has a large bushel of fresh fruits stocked to nearly overflowing that are used to make each cocktail with fresh pressed juice straight from the source. Because of this the margaritas and the sangria are other worldly! These cocktails are so good, they go down like…well…juice.
Tacos! Good luck ordering just 3
Tacos are a pretty popular item to riff on in Atlanta, but what I like about Bartaco’s take is that they let the meat of their tacos shine. Where many establishments pile on the pico de gallo, greens, and sauces, Bartaco cooks each protein to perfection (I dream about that Pork Belly Taco) so that with just a nominal addition of cilantro and onions, the tacos are perfectly complimented without being unmanageable or overwhelming. Now we each stuck to 3 tacos each, but they are so good that I don’t know that I could stick with so little the next time I’m there. I think next time I’ll add the Spicy Chorizo and Chicken Tacos to my order sheet.
It’s not often that I laud a healthy food option on this blog, and even less frequent that it involves a favorite eatery. But this tuna tatako simply cannot be denied. Fun fact for you health nuts, you can actually get all of bartaco’s tacos as lettuce wraps instead of with more traditional corn or flour tortillas. This “taco” has several pieces of ancho-crusted tuna with an asian slaw that makes every bite fresh and light. They also have a tuna poke bowl that I jumped on so quickly and ate so fast that I completely forgot to take a picture of it for you. Whoops! Sorry, not sorry. I’m not usually a big tuna fan (I typically prefer salmon) but both of these dishes have made me rethink my stance.
Let me just say that we were not planning to stay for dessert let alone each ordering our own bevy of sweet treats so let me walk you through how the dessert deluge came about. We ended up sitting at our table for hours enjoying ourselves and our foodhile we were enjoying our cocktails and tacos, and over time we couldn’t help but notice that every single table around us ordered ice cream. And they looked goooooood. What is it about an ice cream cone that makes ice cream so much more enjoyable? Also, because we didn’t order more tacos as we had discussed, we decided to splurge on dessert and also ordered the churro + chocolate sauce, the key lime pie and the spiced chocolate pudding to round out our trio of trios. Yowzas! The spiced pudding was a dessert I want to try and recreate on my own. Job well done, Bartaco. You will be seeing me quite frequently as I try to figure out your recipe and claim it for my own or wear you down until you just give me the recipe outright. Which ever comes first.
I’d recommend ordering the desserts like the tacos, in waves. Start first with the pie, pudding, and churros, they once those have been thoroughly enjoyed, close out an ice cream cone for each of you. New rule: every meal should end with an ice cream cone. Now if your sweet tooth isn’t as pronounced as the three of us, and only want to indulge in one treat I’d recommend the key lime pie. It was my personal favorite and just perfectly hit the spot after all of my tacos and cocktails. I’d imagine the warmed churros are the perfect one-stop-treat during the colder months since it’s served hot and gooey with the chocolate sauce slightly salted for a sweet and tangy bite! Okay I’m making myself salivate just typing…