Friday, May 14, 2010

Tacos Ensenada: A Duarte Foodie Gem

Lunch at Tacos Ensenada

One of the great things about living in my little town of Duarte right now comes in the form of a small hole in the wall restaurant called Tacos Ensenada. From the restaurant's name, it's safe to say that it's a taco joint, but for those of you in the know, Ensenada is a city in Mexico known for its fish tacos. Put that all together and what's coming out of this restaurant's kitchen are extremely tasty fish (and shrimp) tacos.

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Lunch at Tacos Ensenada

The restaurant itself is tiny and I'm talking, 4 tables that can seat a total of 16 people at one time. There's also a fresh condiment bar where you can get pickled carrots, red onions, radishes and these yellow peppers sprinkled with chili powder. I could have easily eaten more than the two I had, but wanted to make sure I had room for my meal.

Lunch at Tacos Ensenada
Lunch at Tacos Ensenada

First to arrive was my Fish Ceviche Tostada. I liked how large the sections of avocado were that topped the tostada. In fact, I ended up just eating those on their own. As for the fish itself, I found it be bland. I could taste hints of lime, but there needed to be more flavor. Perhaps, they didn't "cook" it in its marinade long enough or they just didn't use enough ingredients. Maybe, they were just having an off day. They had only been open for a few days when I stopped by. Hopefully, when I try it for a second time, it'll be better.

Lunch at Tacos Ensenada

What didn't disappoint were their fish and shrimp tacos. I ordered one of each as part of their combo platter, which by the way, only cost $5.39. The first thing I tried was the fish taco, which actually had a generous fish portion. It was longer than the tortilla itself.

Lunch at Tacos Ensenada

At my first bite, I already knew that I was going to be a happy fish taco eater. What I liked about the batter was that it wasn't oily nor was it heavy. The fish's batter was a nice golden brown and crispy while the fish meat itself was moist and delicate. It was a taco that was both messy and yet great to eat.

Lunch at Tacos Ensenada

I enjoyed the shrimp taco just as much. The shrimp was sweet and cooked just as right. It was just as messy as the fish taco, but I didn't mind bite after delicious bite.

Lunch at Tacos Ensenada

Overall, although the fish ceviche tostada was a bit of a disappointment, the fish and shrimp tacos more than made up for it. In fact, I've been back a couple more times and can't seem to not order those fish and shrimp tacos. Hopefully, Tacos Ensenada is up for a long stay so that I'll be able to try more of their menu.

Tacos Ensenada
2171 East Huntington Drive
Duarte, CA 91010
(626) 359-4959
Tacos Ensenada on Urbanspoon



Streetgourmetla said...

Finally went here today, Abby. The fish taco is solid, I'd rank it a #3 or #4 fish taco in LA.Behind Ricky's, El Teto's, and it might be better than Tacos Baja, or it might not.

You're spot on about the fish ceviche. It wasn't particularly Ensenada style, and was bland, the fish wasn't exciting at all.

Great that you can get your fish taco fix in your 'hood!

pleasurepalate said...

Well, I learned about what to look for in a good fish taco from you. :) The fact that it made your top 5 made my day.