Taco Ocho could easily be classified as a neighborhood taqueria. The fast casual restaurant, which opened in May 2011 in Richardson, has an unmistakable Mexican influence but also subtly embraces cooking styles and comfort cuisines from several Latin American countries. True to its name, Taco Ocho offers eight tasty interpretations of fresh and authentic Mexican/Latin favorites on familiar platforms - tacos, tortas and tostadas. Every item is made-to-order using the freshest ingredients and presenting its own distinctive taste south of the border.
Tostadas: Crossed the border but never lost their way.
Taco Ocho’s vegetarian tostadas are a pile of healthy goodness stacked on a crisp, corn tortilla. The fresh ingredients, uniqueness and quality stand out in such items as the Sonoran, which perfectly combines tender cactus, grilled jicama, red onion, pickled jalapenos, tomatoes, queso fresco, lime and cilantro vinaigrette. The popular Puebla features roasted garbanzo hummus, shredded cabbage, corn pico, queso fresco and a tangy chipotle ranch dressing. Another favorite is the more classic Americana, a well-balanced combination of shredded lettuce, refried black beans, pico de gallo, roasted corn, cotija cheese and chipotle ranch. A three-tostada sampler is $6.95.
Tacos: Mexican born. American made.
Just like their tostada counterparts, each taco has its own identity, nicely packaged in a flour or corn tortilla. The Cabo Fish Tacos, made with beer battered or grilled cod, jicama slaw, and chipotle cream sauce, haven’t lost their flavorful soul from Cabo San Lucas. Venezuelan-inspired Latin Love features shredded beef, refried black beans, fried plantains, aged cotija cheese, and salsa verde. The succulent Jalapeno Pork Tacos offer a spicy kick of pork braised with jalapenos and tomatillos and topped with queso fresco and cilantro. Tacos are $3.50 a la carte or $7.95 for a plate of two, Ocho rice, and refried beans.
Tortas: The Latin American’s version of a French baguette.
Taco Ocho’s signature line of grilled tortas begins with bolillo bread made specially from a local bakery. Choose one of its eight signature flavors, from the Peruvian-inspired Cusco made with stir-fried steak, potatoes, sautéed red onions and fresh cilantro to the deliciously spicy Pobrizo of grilled chorizo, poblano peppers and onions, black bean spread, Oaxaca cheese and salsa verde. A torta sandwich with chips cost $7.95.
Taco Ocho is spacious, bright and friendly, accented with a large colorful hand-painted mural depicting the Metropolitan Cathedral in Mexico City and a cluster of Tom Dixon press glass lights hovering over a 20-foot long communal table. Few would guess the premier Taco Ocho is a “mom-and-pop” boutique establishment due to its professional interior design and branding. However, the Latin-inspired fast casual concept has been the brainchild of concept founder Mani Bhushan for the last two years.
Bhushan is no stranger to the hospitality industry, formerly holding senior management positions with nationally-recognized brands including PepsiCo, Yum! Brands and Blockbuster. Bhushan engaged the help of his talented family with architectural design and graphics. His wife, a native of Mexico, enjoyed sharing some of her family recipes that have been passed down through the generations. In addition, Bhushan appointed Rodolfo Cardoso as Executive Chef to help create the menu, standardize recipes, ensure quality and consistency, train staff, and manage the fast-paced kitchen on a daily basis. The experienced Chef Rodolfo formerly served as banquet sous chef at the Four Seasons Mexico City, sous chef at NYLO and executive chef at Gentle Creek Golf Club.
Taco Ocho, a Latin-inspired fast casual restaurant featuring eight signature tacos, vegetarian tostadas and tortas, is located at 930 East Campbell Road, Suite 109, Richardson, Texas 75081, just a half mile from North Central Expressway. Business hours are Monday through Sunday, 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. For more information, call (972) 238-8080 or visit www.tacoocho.com, Facebook and Twitter.