“Oaxaca is a city in Mexico well known for its exceptional food. We have dedicated ourselves to bringing you traditional Mexican fare. Whenever possible we purchase our produce, meats, dairy and soda from local, organic and sustainable sources. Our salsa and sauces are made from scratch and all our food is made fresh every day. Please enjoy our little taste of Mexico.” –Oaxaca Revolucion de Taco
After visiting Mexico during the past couple summers and consuming only the best original Mexican food, Mexican food in New York did no justice in pleasing my taste buds. I missed the authentic flavors of the grilled meat and the spicy, but refreshing salsa. New York’s take on Mexican food is just not the same as the original food from Mexico itself, no matter how hard these taquerias emphasize their authenticity. I was almost about to give up on my search for the perfect Mexican restaurant until I came across Oaxaca Revolucion de Taco. This little taqueria is located off Bowery, in an alley covered with colorfully decorated sidewalk. From the outside, Oaxaca Revolucion de Taco looks like a regular Mexican restaurant – good amount of seating both indoors and outdoors with a “specials” list hanging on its walls. Despite having a similar look as popular Tex-Mex chains, Oaxaca proved itself to be the most original and authentic Mexican restaurant to set place in NYC.
Patty Wu, the owner of Oaxaca, walked us through the menu and explained some of the highlights offered at Oaxaca. Although the menu is not extensive, customers are able to mix and match fillings and toppings, thus being able to get a good variety with simple ingredients. Another thing that Patty mentioned was the special tacos that were not on the menu: the Korean taco and the potato poblano. The Korean taco is filled with Korean bulgogi, sweetly marinated beef, topped with pear and mango slaw, kimchi, and gochujang, the infamous spicy Korean pepper paste. The potato poblano is a vegetarian taco made of stewed potatoes, vegetables, and pico de gallo. My friend, Amanda, and I voted the Korean taco as our favorite, not because of our Korean heritage, but because this taco had the perfect balance of sweet, sour, tangy, and spicy all in one. We’re very well aware that bulgogi has the tendency of being overly sweet from being marinated, but Oaxaca’s bulgogi was light, chewy, with a slight taste of sweetness to it.
Amanda and I were served with four different tacos: the Korean taco, potato poblano, carne asada (grilled steak), and pollo guisado (stewed chicken). Upon tasting the tacos, I instantly knew that this was the taste of Mexico that I had been desperately searching for. Wrapped with double layers of heated corn tortilla, each taco had its distinct taste of meat and salsa, while at the same time giving the exact taste that brought me back to Mexico. We also tried the enchilada (carne asada, pollo guisado, carnitas), chicken quesadilla, and the burrito. This may sound like a lot of food to split between two people, but everything served at Oaxaca is light and fresh, leaving you satisfyingly full instead of the bloated feeling you get after a heavy Mexican meal. The great thing about Oaxaca is that all of their meats are slow cooked, making them extremely tender and well marinated, and that these meats are hormone free. To top all of this off, Oaxaca serves Jarritos, traditional Mexican sodas that have a refreshingly cool yet not overly sweet flavor.
Oaxaca Revolucion de Taco is an overall amazing Mexican restaurant, but the best thing about it is that everything is so affordable. With each taco priced as low as $3.25, it’s guaranteed that you can enjoy a filling meal without having to break open your wallet. Oaxaca also offers a great lunch special deal and a taco happy hour, where you can get a taco for only $2. With a wide delivery range and a “bring your own beer” system, Oaxaca is a popular taqueria amongst local eaters and travelling eaters like myself. Everything on Oaxaca’s menu is worth trying and I will be paying them another visit shortly for another round of tacos.