Summer of Taco review: Taco Roc

Cinco de Mayo is a pretty important time of year for Knetwit — it marks the anniversary of our move-in from our old corporate offices to our current residence, and this year it represented more as we are now in the middle of The Summer of Taco — every Chattanooga blogger must do his part to find the best taco in town! Serendipity brought these two events together, and I walked into Taco Roc on Lee Highway a very hungry man, and left satisfied.

From an Observer’s Lenses

I ordered a burrito (Ok, I can’t remember many specifics of what I ordered) and a taco to go on the side.  The burrito I will discuss in a moment, for now i will turn my attention to their magnificent, small-fist sized taco.

The taco itself, despite having the appeal of traditional mexican food, served in a manner that promotes fast edibility. The quality of the ingredients is like no other — the lettuce itself was chopped up very fine and was arguably farm-picked green, sitting on top of the lettuce was a crown of one thin yet freshly sliced roma tomato and the beef was fried to perfection with a mix of distinct seasonings (I could identify garlic and peppercorn) and it didn’t feel too greasy, either. The taco itself was not messy, it was the antithesis of messy — it was clean of excess oils and stayed in its flour tortilla quite nicely. Finally, the taco itself was topped with crumbled cheese, which shows as a testament the dedication that Taco Roc’s chefs put into their simple culinary prose. The flavors brought in a sophistication to Taco Roc’s small portion, making it more than suitable for my palate. With the addition of some of their homemade salsas (convienently served in a island-like bar in the middle of the restaurant), I was well on my way to taco heaven.

The Burrito I purchased followed very closely the same artisan standards the taco itself preceded. The same seasoned beef, flour tortilla was used, and it tasted very much like its open-faced counterpart. They also served some pico de gallo on the side, which I used to stack onto to provide a healthy serving of greens with every bite. The other included sides of mexican rice and beans were also exceptional even in modest designations, the rice had a distinct spicyness, but not an overpowering one.

The salsas that Taco Roc has are well prepared, and plenty hot for those who enjoy the mouth-burning experience. An even balance of all herbs and spices assures that no one flavor is overpowered (such as excessive cilantro, I can’t stand that). Try out the hot salsa, you’ll love it. It’s hot, but its not thai food nor is it a spoonful of tabasco to the mouth, it enhances the flavors.

Per Chattarati’s Guidelines

Average Score: 4.3
Presentation & Experience: 4.5
Construction: 3.8
Quality of Ingredients: 4.5
Flavor Balance: 4.5
Creativity & Authenticity: 4
Taco preference: Beef (ok, steak)

In Closing

Taco Roc might not be the place to expect a great taco, or great mexican from, but its genuine mexican food, and its served at a good price — I was able to dine for less than 10 dollars. A great start for the Summer of Taco.

Hopefully as I tour the rest of Chattanooga, and the rest of the tri-state area’s taco shops i’ll be able to make new benchmarks in quality. Until then, make Taco Roc a place you must dine at this summer.

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