Our fair city is slowly becoming a hub for all things considered tacos. With the rise of niche owned restaurants as well as out of town chains (Torchy's and R Tacos), it's pretty easy to find a good taco in Denver nowadays. Now when it comes to taco festivals...well those can be hit or miss. We have attended our fair share of decent festivals (Top Taco) as well as some pretty (Denver Taco Festival) nightmarish ones. At this point our taco expert staff has come up with three essential ingredients to pull of a great festival.
1. Location, location, location.
2. Organization and variety.
3. Other activities (music, car shows, games, dancing, etc.).
A perfect venue should include plenty of space, a decent amount of grass, plenty of shade and for fun maybe throw it at the home of the defending Super Bowl champions. Tacolandia had all of the above (could have had a bit more shade, who are we to complain we had VIP treatment and an umbrella table all to ourselves). The layout was set up perfectly along the Noble Energy Sports Legend Mall, typically reserved for an epic tailgate experience during Sundays. A green patch of grass separated two sides of the festival with taco slanging experts stationed on each side. A stage was setup within the middle providing for entertainment the whole day (more on that below).
This was hands down one of the most organized taco festivals we have ever attended. Along with great organization was the amount of variety options to choose from. Albeit we got in an hour before everybody else we were able to hit up about 80 percent of the taco tastings before we had to shut it down due to the possibilities of heat stroke and the overdose of tortilla filled morsels of heaven. The people at Westword handled everything pretty well, although lines did build up at various points, they seemed to move quickly from station to station. The VIP section was placed towards the back of the mayhem and could have used an extra station or two for beverages in this case Estrella Jalisco's (name drop). All in all great organization and an abundance of choices to select from.
A good festival always has various different activities to do while enjoying the fest itself. This one had it all from traditional Baile Folklorico dancers, to a car show that would make Jay Leno jealous, to great music to compliment the great cultural event. Music by iZCALI (one of our favorite local groups) provided some good ol' fashion Spanish rock. Cars from every era adorned the back lot of the festival with some awesome customized automobiles that had us drooling like this Camaro above.
Some of our favorite tacos:
Best Fish Taco-Southside Kitchen
Best Al Pastor-EL Aguascalientes and Los Chingones
Best Korean Pork-Ursula's Food Truck
Best BBQ-R Tacos
Best Mexican Street Corn-Lola's
Best Cabrito (Goat) Tacos-Work and Class