In a few short years, the Taco Stand has taken San Diego by storm. This casual mini-chain is extremely popular and appears to be rapidly expanding, even beyond San Diego. This is Fun Diego Family’s overview of the Taco Stand.
- Type: Taco Stands/Street Tacos
- Location: North Park, Downtown, Encinitas, La Jolla (also Orange County and Miami, FL)
Our Location: La Jolla
- What to Order: Tacos (carne asada, al pastor, fish, shrimp, cactus, Sonora (beef and beans))
- Salsa Bar: 3 stars
- Drinks: Soda fountain, beer, and wine
- Fish Taco $2.99
- Carne Asada Burrito: $8.89
- 2 Beef Taco Plate: N/A
As its name suggests, the Taco Stand is modeled on the street taco scene found in Mexico. However, this is a very modern, upscale version of the Taco Stand. The menu plays it safe and you will not find the funky, offal-based tacos that you would at a true Mexican taco stand.
As long as you are not set on authenticity, the Taco Stand is delicious. The long lines are probably the best testament to the food quality. We go to the La Jolla location, but not as often as we would like because of the lines.
Thankfully the lines move fast. You order your food at the counter and wait. In most cases, the tables are full but by the time your food is ready a table will come up. At La Jolla, the beach is a block away, so you can always look to have a picnic on Marine Street Beach.
The menu is simple, tacos, burritos, and quesadillas. Sides include fries, corn on the cob, beans, and rice. For dessert, there are churros and paletas (a popsicle). Meats include carne asada (beef), al pastor (pork), chicken, fish, and shrimp. As a vegetarian option, there is cactus.
The tacos at the Taco Stand are in the $3 to $4 range. Burritos are around $8. Two tacos are a pretty healthy meal. For $2.50 you can add a side of rice and beans. There is a nice salsa bar with about 6 types of salsa and pickled onions.
The food at the Taco Stand is freshly made. At the La Jolla location, you can actually watch them make the tortillas. The meat is cooked on the grill in front of customers. The al pastor is on a big rotisserie in the style of Greek gyros. It is sliced off to order.
The Taco Stand is definitely a leader in San Diego’s Mexican food scene. The crowds are there for a reason. It is by no means an authentic experience of a Tijuana taco stand. Personally, I mainly care about the food. Tijuana is only an hour away if I want the real deal.
Fun Diego Family is slowly covering the massive Mexican food scene in San Diego. The Taco Stand is a notable contender in the Tacos Stands/ Street Taco category. To see our complete overview of types of Mexican restaurants be sure and check out this guide.