The Taqueria La Guadalupe is close to my heart.
Following my move to the South last August, the first order of business (besides finding a job and planning a wedding) was to check out the local eats. Naturally.
Hungry and new in town, I promptly did some research for ethnic places on Chowhound which led me to the Taqueria La Guadalupe.
Similar to Saigon, upon entering the taqueria I had a good feeling about the food judging from the amount of Spanish speaking going on. The reasoning falls somewhere along the lines of why I have a woman gynecologist (just sayin).
Normally Marco, the owner, greets people and takes orders from the counter. Then you seat yourself at the counter, middle tables or booths lining the wall. Space is limited, but we’ve never been left standing.
The taqueria serves menudo, tamales, tortas, fajitas, quesadillas, burritos, tacos and many other more authentic dishes I’m forgetting to mention. For most of the entrees you can choose from a variety of meats including: barbacoa, chicken, asada, pastor, and chorizo. A cooler near the door holds desserts, soda, water and drinks like guava and mango juice.
I usually get the taco combo (two asada tacos and one chicken), Ben gets the enchilada plate (different meats every time) served with beans and rice, and together we share chips, salsa and spicy queso dip. We generally stick to the tacos and enchiladas, but have ventured to the torta or tamales on occasion.
Unlike typical Mexican restaurants, you have to order chips and salsa which is worth the $1.50. The salsa is a good consistency, smokey and slightly spicy; not overly sweet or watery like most I’ve had around here. The spicy queso has bits of green, jalapenos or chilies I assume, but void of any actual heat.
The tacos are a beautiful sight to behold. Flavorful bits of meat are cradled by soft white corn tortillas and adorned with cheese, tomatoes, iceberg lettuce, chopped cilantro, avocado, a line of sour cream (?) on top and lime on the side. Yum. And not much different but equally as good, the enchiladas are stuffed with meat and crowned with a plethora of toppings.
The few tamales I’ve had here are decent, if a little lackluster. They use plantain leaves instead of corn husks to wrap them, and are slightly larger than average. On the other hand, the torta is a crazy, delicious mess. Once we split a Cubana Torta which has layers of chicken, steak, ham and pork, plus a long list of toppings. I’ve never before eaten a sandwich that has so much going on and still manages to taste incredibly good.
I usually finish meals with something sweet, but it only took one incident with flan to make it my last. The flan was kind of rubbery and tofu-like. We pass over their dessert options and head to the nearby Sweet Tree Yogurt.
Inconspicuously located near the corner of County Line Road and Old Canton Road, the taqueria shares a parking lot with a Hispanic convenience store. Diners are allowed to buy beer at the store and bring it into the restaurant. And as if eating at a friend’s house the close quarters, plastic dinnerware and Telemundo in the background make it comfortably casual.
There are no pretenses. The food is deliciously simple and consistently fresh. Now I have a taco craving.
It’s no wonder the Taqueria La Guadalupe has a place in my heart, always and forever.
Taqueria La Guadalupe
6537 Old Canton Road
Ridgeland, MS 39157