Tacos El Gordo Re-Opens on the Las Vegas Strip and All Was Right With the World

Tacos El Gordo has re-opened at its former location on the Las Vegas Strip.

To provide some context, for fans of this popular taco joint, this news is akin to hearing a possible brain tumor was merely a smudge on the X-ray.

Tacos El Gordo
It’s a good bet your salivary glands just perked up like a showgirl’s chimichangas in a walk-in freezer.

Tacos El Gordo closed abruptly in December 2014, the result of an ugly squabble between restaurant ownership and the management of the strip mall where the establishment is located. Tacos El Gordo is just north of the Encore hotel-casino.

While there is another successful Tacos El Gordo location in Las Vegas, the Strip location was especially beloved because, well, drunchies, mainly.

Tacos El Gordo
Let’s get this fiesta started.

When Tacos El Gordo closed, the interior was stripped to the bones, and owners of the restaurant said it would not be back. Thankfully, hatchets were buried, amends were made and one of the most popular Mexican restaurants in Las Vegas is back in business.

Tacos El Gordo
We don’t know who this Al Pastor guy his, but he makes some delicious meat on a vertical rotisserie called a “trompo,” or “spinning top.” Good work, Al!

Because word hasn’t really gotten out about the re-opening of Tacos El Gordo, lines are unusually short. That will change dramatically, possibly by the time you finish reading this sentence.

Tacos El Gordo Las Vegas
A first at Tacos El Gordo. Enjoy it while it lasts.

To honor the return of the much-buzzed-about restaurant, we dined there for the first time, and are pleased to say Tacos El Gordo’s reputation is well-deserved.

As the name Tacos El Gordo suggests, the menu is taco-centric, with most offerings in the $2 range.

Tacos El Gordo Las Vegas Strip
Just save some time and order one of everything.

The meats (mainly beef and pork) are all absolutely succulent. We honestly had no idea what to order, so we let the friendly folks behind the counter decide, and everything exceeded all expectations.

Before it closed, Tacos El Gordo had a bit of a reputation for being illogically laid out, and that remains unchanged in the new iteration. First, guests order at different parts of the counter based upon which meats they’d like.

Then, once the food is prepared, customers take their food to a cashier on the other side of the restaurant to pay. On a busy day, which we expect will be every day once word of the opening spreads, this could lead to some frustration, but the food overshadows any logistical challenges.

Tacos El Gordo
You don’t judge their ordering process and they won’t judge your pronunciation of “pague en la caja.”

The meats are carved or chopped to-order, and the toppings (white onion, cilantro and a green sauce, pictured below) are excellent. The flavors—spicy, savory and sweet—dance across one’s tongue like the graceful arcs of water at the Bellagio fountains. Or something.

If you’re unsure what to include or exclude in your taco, defer to the staff, many of whom appear to be actual Mexicans, which is sort of a plus in a taco joint.

The menu also includes things like Vampiro, Sopes, Mulas and several other words we didn’t recognize. That said, we look forward to trying everything on the menu based on the unforgettable tacos.

Tacos El Gordo
After trying this beef taco, we went back for more, mainly to annoy Donald Trump.

Tacos El Gordo features an interesting, although fairly baffling, lime and radish bar. No, really. We asked what that’s all about, and a cashier let us know sometimes people like radishes. And lime sometimes cuts the heat of the spices in certain flavored meats.

Tacos El Gordo
Radishes are related to wasabi, and a cup of radishes has a mere 19 calories.

With the return of Tacos El Gordo to its former location, the restaurant is sure to regain its reputation as the must-try place for cheap eats on the Las Vegas Strip.

Gracias por regresar, Tacos El Gordo! Unless the Internet translated that incorrectly, then nevermindo.

Tacos El Gordo Returns