Best Taqueria

Malena's Taco Shop

Malena's Taco Shop does tacos a bit differently than the typical Mexican joint, as each one is like a miniature salad atop a corn tortilla. The shrimp taco features a delicious mess of cabbage, diced tomatoes, onions, and cilantro. The pork and beef versions have hearty portions of moist carnitas-style braised swine or gloriously greasy asada, garnished with thick dollops of creamy guacamole, tomatoes, onions, and cilantro. And the pollo is perhaps the least traditional, piled high with shredded lettuce, tomatoes, cilantro, and sprinkled with grated cheese. For fundamentalists, the menu is loaded with standard Mexican "family fare" chiles rellenos, burritos, tostadas, etc. -- and even the distinct tacos come with an optional side of beans and rice, just as an authentic Mexican meal should. KEEGAN HAMILTON 2010 N.W. 56th St., 789-8207

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