A long list of homemade dishes make regulars happy
Wonderful food can come from unexpected, understated locations.
My husband and I recently devoured some of the best, and most authentic, Mexican food we’ve had in Tallahassee from a bright blue food truck called Tally Taco parked off Apalachee Parkway.
The quality of food produced in this taqueria truck is remarkable. Each morning, Abelino Nava and his wife Yadira prepare a long list of Mexican dishes, including their homemade corn tortillas, beans and salsas. Meats, chicken and other protein are cooked to order.
“Everything is freshly made,” said the Navas’ daughter, Yareydi Salazar, who often helps out, especially on the customer side. “My parents get up really early and do everything that day.”
It makes a difference.
My quesadilla was terrific, packed with lots of plump shrimp and mozzarella in a flour tortilla, with aromatic green and red salsas. I am craving a quesadilla right now.
My husband devoured his fish taco (with mahi mahi) served on a homemade corn tortilla shell. American-style tacos are made with lettuce, cheese and tomatoes. Mexican-style tacos add cilantro, chopped onions, lime radish and jalapeños,
Tacos aren’t huge but they’re only $2 to $3 each so customers generally buy a few, a good way to try different types. There is a long list of options including chicken, steak, two types of pork, shrimp, shredded beef, ground beef, beef tongue, beef cheek and pork stomach and one of the most popular choices, birria.
A birria taco is filled with a traditional stew-like beef served with a rich, slow-cooked consomme for dipping – like a Mexican au jus – made by Yadira. I’ve heard she also makes a killer mole sauce, a work-intensive concoction, so if it’s available be sure to order it.
My husband savored his tamale, which he called the ‘ultimate Mexican comfort food,’ – a homey well-seasoned chicken filling wrapped in a cornmeal dough and cooked in corn husks.
Tally Taco also serves burgers (rave-worthy, I hear), empanadas, tortas, burritos, wings and daily specials, with beverages like Mexican soda or sometimes the traditional drink, horchata (made from ground rice).
And for dessert, we ordered he homemade churros and they were fantastic. We were so full, we thought we’d only have a bite but we devoured four or five – I can’t remember how many because we gobbled them down. Sweet and cinnamony, the crisp snack also had a pleasant kick. They’re served with whipped cream and a drizzle of chocolate sauce. Oh my.
Tally Taco is located in the parking lot by the now closed Thai Orchid Sushi Bar at 2529 Apalachee Parkway. It’s a big truck with a white awning and there’s seating in the adjacent covered patio.
The Nava family has been renting space here for about two years, starting just as Covid hit and many businesses closed down, said Yareydi. “Most places shut down but we were able to do grab-and-go meals and stayed open.”
The family is originally from Acapulco, and Abelino was hired about 15 years ago to come to Alabama and later Crawfordville to cook at Mexican restaurants. He then decided to open his own business.
Tally Taco has built up a regular clientele, with many customers coming from nearby offices. We chatted with two such customers, Kate and Amber, who are big fans.
“I think the food is delicious and authentic,” said Kate.
“It’s addictive,” added Amber.
No argument there.
Details: Tally Taco is at 2529 Apalachee Pkwy. It’s open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday, 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday and closed Sunday. 850-666-3589. Delivery by Bite Squad also available.
We’re getting a lot of top-notch, interesting food trucks in Tallahassee. For our food truck directory, please see https://www.tallahasseetable.com/?s=food+trucks on this website