Curtis Stone's 4 Favorite Tacos in NYC

The LA-based chef dishes on his Big Apple faves
February 14, 2017
by Zagat Staff

We recently hosted LA-based chef Curtis Stone on our livestream series, Chefs Eating Tacos, where host Lauren Ashley Smith dined with him at NYC's El Parador Cafe, the oldest Mexican restaurant in the city. Off camera, we grilled the Gwen and Maude chef about his favorite tacos in NYC. While LA still outshines the Big Apple in the taco department, here's what he had to say about some of the city's best. 

Tune in to our Facebook page every #TacoTuesday for a new episode of Chefs Eating Tacos and get your questions ready!

El Parador Cafe
Mexican · Murray Hill · $$
Food 4.1 · Decor 3.7 · Service 4.0

A “locals’ hideout” since 1959, this “warm” Murray Hill “standard” keeps regulars “coming back” with “true Mexican food” that’s consistently “solid” ; the “retro” setting has “a certain charm” , and the staff is as “friendly” as the drinks are “potent.”
La Esquina
Mexican · SoHo · $$$
Food 4.3 · Decor 4.0 · Service 3.9

“Straight-up delicioso” describes both the food and the scene at this ever- “trendy” SoHo Mexican comprising a “dive” -like taqueria, casual indoor/outdoor cafe and “ultracool” , hard-to-access underground grotto; the Williamsburg spin-off set in a “futuristic retro diner” comes equipped with a moody back room and “huge outdoor patio.”
Mexican · NoMad · $
Food 3.7 · Decor 3.2 · Service 3.5

What started as a "popular food truck" has gone "brick-and-mortar" at these Manhattan spin-offs offering the same "fresh" , Mexican-meets-BBQ fare served up "quick" ; "very reasonable prices" compensate for the "just satisfactory" ambiance.
Empellon Taqueria
West Village · $$$
Food 4.1 · Decor 3.7 · Service 3.9

“First-rate” ingredients in “imaginative” combinations make for some seriously “haute” tacos at this “trendy” West Village Mexican where the “strong” margaritas are just as “creative” ; “slightly upscale” pricing doesn’t deter those who keep its “barlike” space “crowded and noisy.”