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Tuesday
Sep012015

(NYC) Reviewed: Otto's Tacos' third location sizzles in Hells Kitchen

*This post was written by Edgar A. Castillo and edited/formatted by The Lunch Belle*

Restaurant: Otto's Tacos

  • Cuisine: Mexican fast-casual
  • Location: 705 9th Avenue - NY, NY 10019  
  • Pricing: $
  • What's delicious: Tacos, horchata, churros
  • Perfect for: Taco cravings, work day lunches, late night cravings

...

Upon entering Otto’s Tacos’ third location in Hells Kitchen, I immediately noticed three things:

  1. This brand new stunner was at least twice as large as its East and West Village siblings.
  2. That kick ass Star Wars-inspired mural on the back wall (as seen in photo #2, below)!
  3. Twelve seats’ worth of street-side al-fresco dining!

Photos courtesy of Otto's TacosAs someone who eats tacos for almost 50% of his meals, I’m quite versed with this territory (in other words, this ain't my first taco rodeo).  Otto’s successfully provides this familiar fare, while also including a handful of newer options, including both shrimp and vegetarian (made with mushroom) tacos, masa fries, and house-made horchata.  And speaking of horchata, Otto's version is absolutely spot-on: Refreshing, sweet (but not too sweet), and blended with the perfect amount of cinnamon and spice.  It's a hands down winner and completely reminiscent of my childhood (minus the piñata swinging back to wallop me on the head).

Horchata: Photo by Edgar A. CastilloOh, and did I mention that they have Dr. Pepper on tap?  They have Dr. Pepper on tap!!!

...

Here's a run down of what I ate:

Los tacos

  • Shrimp: Plentiful, juicy, and drizzled with an amazing serrano crema
  • Carne asada (marinated beef): Decent amount of spice with incredible succulence.  The beef fell apart in my mouth - not through the tortilla - which was key!  Beyond tender and, without a doubt, my favorite taco of the trio.
  • Carnitas (slow-roasted pork): Crowned with green chile, chopped onions, and fresh cilantro, this taco certainly stood out.

Photos captured by Edgar A. CastilloChips and guac

What is typically one of my favorite aspects of the meal, the guacamole stopped short of its potential, lacking in both spice and flavor.   

Save for room for churros

Save room for churros, I tell you!  There’s no better way to wrap up a wonderful Mexican meal at Otto's than to savor an order of these deliciously sweet and doughy treats.  Served warm (read: hot) and accompanied by a cup of dulce de leche (caramel sauce) for dipping purposes, you'll thank yourself for saving some "tummy room."  Heck, skip the bland chips and guacamole all together and order two rounds of these babies!  They're that good.

Churros: Photo by Edgar A. CastilloI couldn’t finish this recap without giving a shout out to Diomi, the employee who guided me through the ordering process and accommodated me during my visit.  He’s been with Otto’s “pretty much since day one” and does this taqueria much justice!

...

Until we eat again,

Edgar A. Castillo for The Lunch Belle

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