Border Taco

Mexican
Memorable
One of the best
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The name of this place is no lie. In the border town of Douglas, it appears to be the restaurant closest to Mexico. Conversations among staff and customers are in Spanish, and our Spanish is no better than their English, so when we stepped up to the counter, most of our ordering was done by pointing at the menu (which is bilingual).

Local tipster Patty Ortiz had directed us to Border Taco with the promise, “It’s like grandma is in the kitchen.” Believe me, my grandmother did not make tacos this delicious! (My grandmother probably never heard of a taco.) The list of potential ingredients is long, including beef tongue, beef head, beef rind, shrimp, and steak; and all are available in big burritos as well as modest-size tacos. Continue reading

The name of this place is no lie. In the border town of Douglas, it appears to be the restaurant closest to Mexico. Conversations among staff and customers are in Spanish, and our Spanish is no better than their English, so when we stepped up to the counter, most of our ordering was done by pointing at the menu (which is bilingual).

Local tipster Patty Ortiz had directed us to Border Taco with the promise, “It’s like grandma is in the kitchen.” Believe me, my grandmother did not make tacos this delicious! (My grandmother probably never heard of a taco.) The list of potential ingredients is long, including beef tongue, beef head, beef rind, shrimp, and steak; and all are available in big burritos as well as modest-size tacos. Jane and I were especially fond of the smoky red carne adobada, the chile verde replete with vegetable flavor, the dark and beefy barbacoa. Fried shrimp were less impressive; like the chile relleno, their flavor was subdued.

Although Border Taco is located in an utterly boring mall (just yards away from a Taco Bell) and the spacious dining room is so clean it seems on the verge of being sterile, this is a restaurant with soul, not only in the food but in the ambience. Some of that ambience you actually can smell: menudo simmers, beef grills, roasted hot chilies sweeten the air. And d├ęcor actually is quite personal. On the wall hangs a portrait of a tricked-out Ford pickup truck. On the mantle, below the flat-screen TV, are portraits of people that we presume are the owner’s family. And not far away from that are glass bricks installed in the wall in the shape of a cactus.

Diners who come as a foursome can avail themselves of a family platter (steak, chicken, shrimp, salad, chili, rice, beans, and tortillas) at under $10 per person.

Dishes to try
Border Taco, Carne Adobada Taco
Carne Adobada Taco
Must-Try
Tender, smoky and vividly fire-flavored, carne adobada is a star of the Border Taco kitchen.
Border Taco, Chile Verde Taco
Chile Verde Taco
Must-Try
Chile verde is relatively mild, but hot-hot sauce in a squeeze bottle is available to give it punch.
Beef Taco
Border Taco, Condiments
Condiments
In this part of the world, taco condiments are no afterthought.
Border Taco, Chile Rellenos
Chile Rellenos
Chile rellenos are more about the cheese and batter than the chile itself.
Border Taco, Shrimp Taco
Shrimp Taco
Shrimp are available either ranchero (sauced) or fried. This is the latter, and is fairly bland before getting dolled up with condiments.
Directions and Hours
closed now
Sunday7:30am - 10pm
Monday7:30am - 10pm
Tuesday7:30am - 10pm
Wednesday7:30am - 10pm
Thursday7:30am - 10pm
Friday7:30am - 10pm
Saturday7:30am - 10pm
Roadtrips
This restaurant is featured in the following eating tours.
7 stops | 1 hr 52 min total driving
Information and Policies
Seasons
Open Year Round
Meals Served
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Credit Cards Accepted
Yes
Alcohol Served
No
Outdoor Seating
No
Reservations Accepted
No
Delivery Available
Yes
Takeout Counter
Yes