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Sunday, March 23, 2014

Dating in 2014: Mission Taco Joint

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We went a little unconventional for this month's "Dating in 2014" restaurant, turning it into a quadruple date and taking Brecken with us! Still, the challenge is all about spending time together and (usually) trying new restaurants, so the mission (no pun intended) was definitely still complete!
Our friends Paige and Zach were in town and they mentioned wanting to go to Mission Taco Joint, which coincided perfectly with the plans I had to try it out. I'd been holding off until post-pregnancy because I wanted to get a margarita!
As it turned out, I skipped the margarita and went instead for the Paloma (tequila, grapefruit & lemon juice, agave syrup, and soda water with a sugar rim). As pretty as it was, I actually preferred Ryan's cocktail, the Rudy Valentino (mezcal, hibiscus syrup, orange juice, and sweet vermouth). I sampled a few of our friends' drinks, and another favorite was the Pueblo Cafe (tequila, cinnamon syrup, and a condensed coffee roast...sounds weird, tastes amazing!). 
mission taco
Crab Taquitos 
We enjoyed a few appetizers with our cocktails. The chips and two salsas of the day were okay--most restaurant chips aren't salty enough for me, and these were no different. One salsa was spicier and smokier, which I liked, but the other tastes too much like marinara sauce to me. The crab taquitos more than made up for it, however, and I would've happily finished the plate of those myself! 

Although Mission Taco has a number of interesting sounding burritos and tortas, we were there for their namesake-the tacos! Ryan and I opted to sample five, four off of the menu and then the special of the day, a mahi-mahi mango taco. The others included the duck, grilled baha fish taco, the carne asada, and the sweet potato & chorizo. Our friends also ordered tacos, all of which arrived at the table family style in fun taco holders. How do I get one of these for taco nights at our house?!?
mission taco
Street Corn

Consensus across the board was that the sweet potato & chorizo was the best, and the duck was the most disappointing. I'm not a huge duck fan anyway, but the meat was unfortunately dry. The two fish tacos were excellent, and I was pleasantly surprised by the carne asada taco, which came topped with arugula, queso fresco, and an avocado serrano sauce. At only a few bucks apiece, it's affordable to essentially sample the entire taco menu. Next time I have my eye on the beef brisket and yucatan chicken tacos, both of which have come highly recommended! We also split a side of the street corn, which I dipped chips into and loved a whole lot more than either salsa. Don't skip it! My only regret was not saving room for dessert; the churros were calling my name! I'll be back...

If you find yourself in St. Louis, give Mission Taco a try. Be forewarned--they don't take reservations and the place was packed by 5:30 on a Friday night! There were a surprising number of kids there, so Brecken wasn't out of place at all, but those trying to avoid kids can just show up at a more respectable dinner hour ;)  Mission Taco Joint on Urbanspoon