Taco Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday…Everyday: Black-owned taco shops are thriving in Atlanta
By King Williams
Metro Atlanta is a food lover’s paradise, its plethora of restaurants, foodies, and constant output of new ideas makes the region second to none. For Black-owned restaurant connoisseurs in the area, even traditional Mexican food can get remixed in ways only possible in Atlanta. Here are 10 Black-owned taco restaurants, a collection of traditional Mexican, Tex-Mex, fusion, and health-centered options that would make your inner foodie proud, please support them on Taco Tuesday or Wednesday or Thursday, Friday…whenever you want tacos.
Amorous Tacos is the vision of Atlanta native Jewel Anderson and her younger sister chef Nancy Anderson, a culinary graduate of Johnson & Wales University in Miami, Florida. Amorous, a pop-up restaurant and food truck, is known for its elevation of flavors including its cactus taco shells, handmade sauces, and its top-shelf menu item the ‘polyamorous’, a trio of tacos, lamb, duck, and lobster.
Amorous Tacos excels at birria tacos, a traditional central Mexican dish from the state of Jalisco that involves using a traditional stew to both fry the tacos and as a side dish, used to dip the tacos or eat on its own. Amorous Tacos specializes in a variety of birria tacos outside of the traditional beef or goat meat including their smoked chicken, duck, lamb, and its standout vegetarian birria. In addition to its newly released queso birria.
Location: Varies. Wednesdays: Atlantucky, 170 Northside Drive, SW, Atlanta 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Thursday: Independent Distilling, 547 E. College Avenue, Decatur, 5-9 p.m.
Try this: Veggie birria nachos + cactus tacos
Located in the historic Sweet Auburn Curb Market. Tijuana Tacos offers the best traditional Mexican tacos and one of the best birria tacos in the metro Atlanta area. The menu is made for enthusiasts of the Jalisco version of Mexican tacos and does not disappoint. This restaurant is co-owned by Jacob Cardenas and Gordon Brown of Philly G’s Cheesesteaks, also located in the Curb Market.
Location: Sweet Auburn Curb Market
Hours: 11am-4pm Monday-Friday
Try this: Steak birria tacos
Co-owner Zoe Fahey’s Holy Taco has been a staple in East Atlanta Village for over 15 years. For those who want both traditional and Tex-Mex style tacos, Holy Tacos is the solid choice. The menu from top to bottom focuses on execution of flavors and consistency of what consumers have come to expect from quality tacos.
Location: 1314 Glenwood Ave, SE. Atlanta, GA. 30316
Hours: Mon-Thur 5-10pm, Friday 4:30pm-10:30pm, Sat 11am-10:30pm, Sun 11am-10pm
Try this: Braised pork belly taco, skirt steak taco
Zubi’s Taco Kitchen (College Park location)
Located at the edge of College Park off Virginia Avenue and a short distance from the Atlanta Airport. Zubi’s differentiator comes in its breakfast tacos and its assortment of healthier, low-sodium menu offerings. Zubi’s Kitchen is also built for those familiar with more established fast-casual chains and who seek consistency in the experience that they offer. Zubi’s Taco Kitchen is open for breakfast-brunch and dinner.
Location: 1509 Virginia Ave, Suite C, College Park, GA 30337
Hours: Tuesday-Thursday 8am-2pm & 5pm-10pm, Friday & Saturday 8am-2pm, 5pm-12am
Try this: The ‘Skegee taco, Cauli-Park taco, and Queso + chips
Chi Chi Vegan Tacos
Chi Chi Vegan Taco Shop is located in East Atlanta, at the corner of Moreland Avenue and Hosea Williams. The site specializes in vegan tacos and healthier fare. Its simplified menu is one of the more straightforward and is built on service. This is the taco shop built for third-party food apps and pick-up orders.
Location: 1 Moreland Ave SE Ste F, Atlanta, Georgia 30316
Hours: 12pm-8pm Tuesday – Saturday
Signature item: Mushroom Asada taco
Waylow Street Tacos
This mobile food truck offers experience as its calling card. The speaker system and microphone make this truck both a site for mobile karaoke and crowd movement. Waylow street tacos are the everyman and everywoman’s taco, it’s flavorful and reasonably priced. Located in mostly pop-ups in Lithonia and Atlanta, Waylow Tacos is opening its first brick-and-mortar location in Lithonia later this year.
Location: Varies, primarily in Atlanta and Lithonia, physical location opens this year in Lithonia.
Try this: Short Rib taco
Located on Tuesdays in the West End between Ameens Fish and The Wrens Nest. Shameless Eatery is aimed at both vegan/plant-based and those curious about healthier options. The flavors and proportions are actually bigger than most meat-based tacos, which is the goal of Shameless. Shameless offers plant-based alternatives to traditional, Tex-Mex, and even birria-styled tacos.
Location: West End on Tuesdays, pop up throughout the week
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 12-5pm
Try this: Vegan birria tacos
Hippin’ Hops Brewery
Primarily known for their brews and spirits, Hippin Hop’s Brewery’s Tuesday-only tacos are fast becoming Atlanta’s place to stop for music + tacos. Hippin’ Hop’s tacos are the bridge for those who want to venture out of the traditional Tex-Mex taco served in the US (beef or chicken, plus dairy) but want to venture out into ideas still familiar.
Hippin Hops offers fried fish, shrimp, crawfish, and other soul food-inspired recipes. Anchored by a live DJ, open patio, and on-request hookah, this is for the current Atlanta nightlife scene. All tacos are served with a Tex-Mex hard or soft-shelled option.
Location: 2380 Hosea L. Williams Dr. NE #1, Atlanta, GA 30317
Hours: Tuesday 5pm-12am, Thur 5pm-10pm, Fri/Sat 5pm-12am, Sun 12pm-8pm
Try this: Fried Crawfish Tacos
As the only second non-traditional tortilla taco-serving restaurant on the list, it’s worth a visit. The restaurant is more for those wanting a bit of nightlife with their meals as it includes a hookah lounge and live DJ on Tuesdays.
Blu Cantina located in East Atlanta Village offers the best overall taco value. Every taco meal comes with beans and rice plus a choice of two or three tacos. In the case of don’t judge a book by its cover, the tacos offer a solid flavor profile with each offering on the menu.
Location: East Atlanta Village
Hours: Sun – Thur 12pm – 12am, Fri/Sat 12pm-2am
Try this: Smoked Chicken Tacos, Carne Asada
Located in an actual convenience store, the corner grocery on Metropolitan Avenue. This taco shop is the quintessential hidden gem. Anchored by a husband and wife duo, Slapping Tacos is a mix of traditional American and spur-of-the-moment creativity that can only happen when located inside a convenience store. Its staple menu of tacos and birria can be anchored by out-of-the-box renditions of specialty tacos, that are announced on its Instagram page 24 hours in advance. Come for the tacos, stay for the experience.
Location: 1407 Metropolitan Parkway, Atlanta, Georgia 30310
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 12-5pm
Try this: Chicken Birria, Beef Birria Ramen Noodles