October 6, 2016

Not Your Average Taco Place

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I was starving by the time I got on the bus to head towards the Commons. It had been an exhausting week but I was excited to try out Gorgers Taco Shack. To be honest, I thought it was going to be your typical taco restaurant, which meant I was excited for authentic Hispanic food. But I soon discovered that Gorgers was surprisingly different from  any other taco place I had visited before, in a very good way.

It was a Friday night when I entered the eatery, and the first thing that struck me was the music. They were playing alternative rock, and I remember thinking immediately that this is probably not your  average taco place. The second I glanced at the menu, my suspicion was confirmed. The menu was filled to the brim with weird and wacky combinations of flavors I had never dreamed of being on a tortilla. Buffalo sauce on a taco? Pineapple-jalapeño salsa with aioli? I was shocked and honestly a little disappointed. I was looking forward to some authentic food, not this weird conglomeration of flavors.

Gorgers is a small shop with a few wooden tables and an exposed kitchen. There’s a bar where you can sit and watch the chef make the tacos. The atmosphere is very relaxed and the soft alternative rock in the background creates a hip vibe. There are only two employees: one chef and another cashier. The service is really nice and laid-back. Your name is called and then you go and get whatever you ordered. I decided I had to give it a shot. I bought three tacos for about $7, so the price was definitely reasonable.

I was apprehensive, but that all changed when I bit into my first taco. It was a chicken taco with habanero-peach salsa, red onion and cilantro on top. Most importantly, it was absolutely terrific. The sweet flavor of the salsa matched beautifully with the spiciness of the onion. The chicken was marinated well and wasn’t dry, and the tortilla itself was warm and soft. All aspects of the taco blended together seamlessly. I loved it!

After the first taco, I was really looking forward to the second one. It was a chicken taco with cilantro, corn relish, scallions and paprika aioli. To be honest, it was not as good as the first one but the flavors still complemented each other really well. The corn relish’s sweetness, combined with the aioli’s tanginess, tasted wonderful. I was struck by how unique this taco was. Although its  combination of flavors was not as interesting as the previous one, it still worked. This place is experiencing with new flavors, which was something I really appreciated.

Amazingly, the final taco was just as good as the first one. It was a pork taco with blueberry-chipotle BBQ and scallions. Being from the South, I’m always bit apprehensive when I find the word BBQ on foods up here in upstate New York. BBQ holds a special place in my heart, and I was pleasantly surprised at how well they captured it in this taco. You have the option to pick a meat for each taco, and picking pork for this one was definitely the right choice. The BBQ sauce combined with pork reminded me of East Carolina pulled pork, and it tasted wonderful. The smokiness of the sauce complemented the sweetness of the blueberry. The pork was nice and tender, and not too tough. All in all, it was a fantastic taco. I grew up with BBQ, and it had never occurred to me that it would taste so good on a tortilla.

Gorgers Taco Shack is definitely not your normal taco place. If you are craving some authentic food in a nice sit-down restaurant, this is not the place for you. But if you’re excited about the fusion of weird, different flavors in the form of a taco, then I would suggest no other place. In this relaxed environment, you’ll taste new and unique combinations along with great service. I will definitely be returning  to this place soon to try even more interesting items off their unique menu.

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