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Nicholas Gilman is a renowned journalist and food writer based in Mexico City.

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TACO TIME: Taco de acelgas @ Tacos Hola

TACO TIME: Taco de acelgas @ Tacos Hola

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This small, locally famous taqueria, identified by its awning, which states simply “HOLA”, is renowned and has appeared in Saveur magazine. It offers our favorite tacos de guisados, that is, prepared fillings.  The verb “guisar” means “to prepare food” implying more elaboration than the literal “cocinar”. Guisados are stews i.e. meats or vegetables in sauce.

They can consist of anything at all, from chicharrón (pork skin) to eggs,  picadillo or pure vegetables. Any prepared or stewed dish heaped onto a taco is a ‘guisado’. While guisados venues traditionally offer their wares in clay cazuelas, modern stainless steel is becoming more common.

At Hola, there are always several vegetarian choices: my favorite is the cooked leafy greens called acelgas (swiss chard) or coliflór (fried cauliflower.)  Large tacos come heaped with beans, rice and/or guacamole. The protocol is to order one at a time, save your plate for more, and pay at the end. Customers join each other at a long outdoor table or stand.

Tacos Hola
Amsterdam 135, corner of Michoacán, Condesa (see map)
Open Monday - Friday 9 a.m. - 9 p.m., Saturday until 8, Sunday until 3

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