Trying to find the Ultimate Fish Taco

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Within the enterprise of reporting on and reacting to tradition — whether or not it’s theater, movie, music, books or eating places — finally one thing you write will find yourself in promotional promoting.

I’m a dwelling instance: If you happen to’ve ever ordered a fish taco from Tacombi on a supply app, then you definitely might need seen its description begins with “Voted ‘Absolute Greatest Fish Taco’ by New York Magazine.”

Really, there was no voting concerned; that was simply me, a singular meals author with an opinion to share and a bottomless urge for food for fish tacos. I wrote that checklist again in 2018, however my fascination with and appreciation for fish tacos (and fried fish usually) has by no means waned. If I see them on a menu, my thoughts is made up — and in the event you really feel the identical method then you understand that fish tacos occupy a really aggressive class of meals that merely have to be reassessed on occasion.

Right here’s what I learn about a perfect fish taco: The fish is tender and surrounded by a shatteringly crunchy crust and a corn tortilla. It requires only a few toppings: shredded cabbage, crema, pico de gallo and a spritz of lime juice. Again in 2018, Tacombi caught to that method they usually really served the platonic excellent of an incredible fish taco. (Los Mariscos at Chelsea Market, Bar Bruno in Greenpoint and Carroll Gardens, and Tacoway Seashore in Rockaway Seashore took second, third and fourth place.) However within the years since, the Tacombi chain has expanded and the standard has fallen off a bit — typically the fish isn’t as crispy as I’d like or the tortilla falls aside in my arms. Nevertheless it nonetheless has the excellence of serving one of the crucial broadly accessible, very respectable fish tacos town has to supply.

A number of areas

In rededicating myself to fish taco-ism, I used to be pointed within the path of two different high candidates: Panzón in Greenpoint was one. Yow will discover this spot on the stretch of Greenpoint Avenue that lifeless ends on the East River. It’s extra bar than restaurant, with a give attention to Mexican avenue snacks like esquites and flautas, and a wide-ranging cocktail, beer and pure wine menu.

However I got here for the fish tacos. At Panzón meaning $24 for 3 Modelo-battered cod tacos topped with cilantro, pineapple, pico de gallo, purple cabbage and salsa roja. Whereas I want I might say that I loved them as a lot as my mezcal Negroni, the fish roughly disappeared beneath all these toppings and left me wanting extra, properly, fish. After I inevitably return to Panzón on a blazing summer time day, it will likely be as an alternative for the tuna tostadas peppered with the whole lot seasoning and tossed in chipotle adobo mayo — and a number of other extra mezcal Negronis.

23 Greenpoint Avenue (Franklin Road)

Then there’s Ensenada, in Williamsburg. Seafood isn’t only a passing curiosity at Ensenada — named for town in Baja California — it’s an obsession, proper all the way down to the ocean-blue inside. Along with the requisite fish tacos, there are tacos de camarones (shrimp), ceviches, aguachiles, entire fish entrees and tostadas.

Right here, the fish tacos price $8 every, a value that can seem to be a downright deal when you lay eyes on the comically giant hunk of fried cod utilized in these tacos. It completely dwarfs the tortilla and wears the cabbage, pico de gallo and crema like costume jewellery. The fish inside that crackly shell is meltingly tender, a lot in order that it fell out of the taco as I used to be consuming. However that simply means forking it so not one little bit of cod is left behind. You’re going to need to order a minimum of two.

And understanding all I learn about fish tacos on this metropolis, that is my favourite — a minimum of for now.

168 Borinquen Place (South Second Road)


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