Tacos

Taco Tuesday and Happy Hour: GuacAmigos

When it comes to Tuesdays there is one food people tend to associate it with, Tacos. After a little research, I found out that the phrase Taco Tuesday originated in a place I never would have thought in a million years, South Dakota (Thrillist). Who would have thought that the phrase would have originated in the MidWest when we all know that the state with the superior tacos is right here in California.

Entrance

For this particular Taco Tuesday, I decided I would stop by GuacAmigos. For all of the readers that have been following my Adventures from the very beginning, you may recognize this place. I attended a Locale Magazine Social Hour right before the pandemic happened. I felt since this was not an accurate representation of their actual Happy Hour it was time to do it justice.

The Restaurant

GuacAmigos gives off the vibe of eating in a run-down taco shack right in Mexico. The ceiling is covered in panels of rusting sheet metal to give off that look. Luckily we aren’t looking up at the ceiling while we are dinging. At eye level, you see the comfy black leather seats which go well with the dark wooden table and walls.

Newport Harbor

Luckily for this restaurant, there is more than just the inside of the restaurant to look at. I sat right next to a window that opened up to a whole other world of Newport Harbor. Many boats line the docks just eagerly waiting to set sail and explore the ocean. Other people can live their extravagant lives while I pig out on some tacos.

Happy Hour Menu

For those that don’t come on a Tuesday, this is the menu for you. Their regular Happy Hour happens Monday through Friday, from 3 to 6 PM. All cocktails are $8 with all but one being Margaritas because you can’t have tacos without a margarita. Then you have a variety of different snacks and appetizers you can enjoy. For those looking to have a good time, one can down some $8 tequila shots!

Taco Tuesday Menu

Now for you Taco Tuesday loving people reading this. Sitting right next to the Happy Hour menu are the All Day Taco Tuesday specials. Most of the drinks are the same as on Happy Hour except for the habanero Passion Fruit Wheel Burn. I decided to pass on this I had recently had the Olvera Street Margarita at Descanso which was also a spicy margarita. It wouldn’t be Taco Tuesday without Tacos which one can only choose from 3 tacos on Taco Tuesday.

Bird “Casa” Margarita

To start things off strong I had to get their Bird “Casa” Margarita. I don’t get the name but in the end, it is a Cadillac Margarita. This large margarita glass is filled to the brim with a medley of citrus juices, Cazadores Tequila, Cointreau, and finished off with Grand Marnier.

When I meant we were starting things off strong I meant it because the combination of 3 liquors and liqueurs meant you would be feeling it. Plus the size alone makes this drink well worth the price tag during Happy Hour. You can tell it is top quality based on the ingredients they use in the drink.

Chips & Salsa

It’s important to get some food in you while you are eating so of course there had to be a basket of chips and salsa brought out. The first batch did, unfortunately, come out a bit stale and cold which is never how you want to start things off during a Happy Hour Adventure. Luckily Gavin the Manager came by and checked up on me and brought me out a fresh basket of warm fresh chips.

One thing I enjoyed about the tortilla chips was the fantastic seasoning that they had sprinkled onto the chips. It was essentially seasoned salt to give the chips more color and more taste than your typical tortilla chips. The salsa for the most part was just your average restaurant house salsa. It did have a slightly smoky taste which paired well with the tortilla chips.

Mango Margarita

Out of all my Adventures so far I don’t think I’ve ever had a Mango Margarita before. I’ve had plenty of other Mango drinks whether it be the Mango-tini from Original Fish Company or the Mango Lassi from India Palace. Although I guess I have made a Spicy Jalapeño Mint Margarita which I topped with a sparkling mango soda.

This margarita was on the complete opposite side of the spectrum when it comes to the amount of alcohol. If you are looking for a sweet and fruity drink then the Mango Margarita is the right thing for you. It’s quite a refreshing drink to enjoy as you look out into the Harbor. Plus I asked for Tajin on the rim to add a little extra flavor to each sip. one unique thing about this drink is that it was served with a bell pepper slice.

Chips and Guacamole

A bowlful of guacamole is always the ideal thing to enjoy with your chips while you wait for your food to come out. I typically don’t go out of my way to order it but if I’m with others that want it then I’ll have some. Although the tortilla chips at GuacAmigos weren’t the ideal dipping vessel for the guac. Their chips are thin and brittle which, don’t get me wrong, I love those types of chips. However, those types of chips tend to break in a thicker sauce.

Besides trying to scoop up the guacamole everything about it was delicious. Each bite was filled with well-seasoned avocados and creamy in texture with the crunch of the chip made it perfect. Plus one can taste hints of garlic within the guacamole. A pile of Pico de Gallo on top allows you to get some bursts of tomato acidity in each mouthful.

Chicken Taquitos

One thing that I tried at the Locale Magazine Social Hour was the chicken taquitos. However, instead of just getting one single taquito I could now have a whole plateful to myself. One can see the taquitos cooked to a perfect golden brown with a bed of lettuce lying underneath. This makes it perfect because if any of the guajillo pepper salsa or tomatoes fall off then you have a perfect salad underneath.

That first bite is one of the perfect crunchy textures. You can tell they were made fresh because you can still taste a little bit of the oil from the deep fryer. You can see that some of the chicken that was peaking out of the taquito had some extra cooking time. That part of the chicken was dry for obvious reasons but once you got to the center you can taste the tender marinated meat. The best part was dipping these taquitos into the Sriracha Aioli to add some spice to every morsel. 

Dos Tacos

Now for the main reason, you probably clicked on the link, tacos! Since I had just had chicken taquitos I figured I would switch up the proteins. I picked the carnitas and ground beef tacos to enjoy on this Taco Tuesday. Typically I do not order ground beef tacos because to me they seem to be a more Americanized version of a taco. Although that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy them. My grandma actually makes ground beef tacos and the whole family loves them, we just call them Grandma’s tacos. For you true taco aficionados reading this you may want to skip to the next paragraph because most of my family puts ketchup on her tacos.

The ground beef taco had a mellow flavor but was either flowing with juices or oil because there was some major drippage. The avocado crema did have a nice touch along with the cotija cheese. However, still not as good as my Grandma’s tacos. The taco star of this Adventure was the carnitas taco. The carnitas themselves came out hot and moist which is essential for carnitas. They were packed with flavor and were tender. I wish I had gotten two but I have to give you the lay down of the better taco.

Trio of Salsas

Jose my waiter was kind enough to bring out a trio of salsas to enjoy with my tacos. Starting from the top and going in clockwise order is the Green salsa. This is the ideal salsa for anyone that is not a fan of spice. Just because there was no spice does not mean there is a lack of flavor. It had a great fresh taste to it and is perfect to cool down anything too spicy. Next up is the light orange salsa which is the habanero salsa. It was more of a creamy habanero salsa because one could taste the heat of the peppers but some creaminess helped to balance it out. Last was the red chile agua salsa. This one sits right in the middle in terms of heat. It was a lot smokier in taste compared to the house salsa.

Elote en Vaso

I was debating on whether or not I should just call it quits because I had quite a bit of food. However, Gavin suggested that I should try the Elote en Vaso. It’s essentially all the makings of an elote but served in a bowl. There are a variety of colors to make it look like a beautiful dish from the golden yellow corn kernels to the green of the lime and parsley. To top it off crumbled bright red hot Cheetos and some white crumbled cotija cheese.

The corn was semi-sweet and was complemented by the creamy sauce that was served within. The hot Cheetos provided a nice crunchy texture for each bite. The cotija cheese was ideal for adding a bit of saltiness to the dish. I only had a couple of bites before officially calling it quits. But to me, this just meant dinner for the next day.

GuacAmigos’ Motto

I wanted to thank Gavin and Jose for the amazing time I had sitting harbor side while enjoying some tacos and margaritas. I should follow GuacAmigos’ motto more because I think I would be a lot happier if I was having tacos and tequila every day.

Website: GuacAmigos

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Since I mentioned the tacos that my grandma makes I have this question for you. What is your favorite dish that your grandma makes?

Let me know down below in the comments and share with friends who would enjoy this Happy Hour.

May the adventures continue! Cheers!

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