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Tacos, Tacos, Tacos! Our 8 Mouthwatering Favorites in Sarasota-Manatee

Tacos Sarasota Manatee

Tacos. We love them with beef. We love them with pork. We love them with fish. We love them with veg. We love them on Tuesdays. Heck, we love tacos any day of the week! And lucky for us, the Sarasota-Manatee area has a whole host of taco trucks and restaurants where we can satisfy our cravings. Here’s a roundup of eight of our mouthwatering local favorites, from north to south.

Pollo Asados La Frontera Tacos Sarasota Manatee

Pork Tacos – Pollos Aasados La Frontera

If you’re searching for authentic, Mexican-style tacos, Pollos Asados La Frontera will satisfy your craving! This casual joint, popular with the locals, offers take-out or dine-in. My favorite is the pork taco, which comes on a soft corn tortilla. The meat is tender and so packed with flavor that it doesn’t need many toppings. Chopped onions, some fresh cilantro and a spicy jalapeño green sauce make this taco complete. Show up between Mon-Thurs and the tacos are only $1.00! Be sure to pair it with yellow rice on the side and order some delicious flan for dessert to round out your meal. Review by: Shannon Keever

1304 8th Ave W, Palmetto, FL 34221, (941) 729-7777

Poppo's Taqueria Carnitas Tacos Sarasota Manatee

Carnitas Tacos – Poppo’s Taqueria

What started out as a small taco joint on Anna Maria Island, has now expanded into four locations in Bradenton. But Poppo’s Taqueria has stayed true to their local, family-owned and operated roots, with each restaurant featuring that funky, street-food-style vibe, complete with handwritten chalkboard signs and wood tables. To me, a taco shop is only as good as their carnitas, and the carnitas here are ridiculous! Brined and slow cooked with a simple spice mix, they’re so moist and savory, they’ll melt in your mouth. I top mine with the honey lime slaw (to die for!), feta cheese, cilantro, a squeeze of lime and a dash of hot sauce. Everything at Poppo’s is prepared clean and simple, so no MSG or GMOs here. And when you order a taco, the friendly staff slap a small ball of dough under a giant press to flatten it, then flip it onto the flattop to cook it up. Talk about a fresh tortilla. Pair it with a cold beer, or a Virgil’s soda and there’s nothing better. Review by Vivian Owen
 
Downtown Anna Maria – 212 C Pine Ave, Bradenton, FL 34208, (941) 254-7941
Northwest Promenade – 6777 Manatee Ave W, Bradenton, FL 34209, (941) 251-6982
Lockwood Commons – 4220 53rd Ave E, Bradenton, FL 34203, (941) 727-1078
The Shoppes at University Center – 8471 Cooper Creek Blvd, Bradenton, FL 34201 (941) 359-3720
 

La Brisa Tacos Mariscos de Pastor Sarasota Manatee

Tacos de Pastor – La Brisa Tacos y Mariscos

This unassuming spot in a strip mall off 301 doesn’t look like much from the outside, but the tacos they’re serving up inside La Brisa Tacos y Mariscos are worth a stop. While the carnitas tacos are soft, shredded and scrumptious enough to rival Poppo’s, it was the tacos de pastor I fell in love with. Tiny cubes of pork, marinated in a chile sauce that turns the meat red, then cooked till crispy, so each bite bursts with smoky, spicy flavor. The tacos are served simply with chopped onions and cilantro on handmade corn tortillas. A squeeze of lime juice and a slather of their tomatillo hot sauce and I was in heaven. Review by: Vivian Owen

Bradenton – 8799 Cortez Road W, Bradenton, FL 34210, (941) 795-4898
Sarasota – 1156 N. Washington Blvd, Sarasota, FL 34236, (941) 552-8868

 

Brick's Smoked Meats Burnt Ends Taco Sarasota Manatee

Bacon Burnt Ends Taco – Brick’s Smoked Meats

When Brick’s Smoked Meats went in next door to my husband’s office, it officially became our favorite barbecue spot in Sarasota. My go-to item is the Bacon Burnt Ends Taco. Piled high with delicious and decadent bacon burnt ends, crunchy smoked poblano slaw, dressed with the perfect blend of queso, cotija cheese, and where-have-you-been-all-my-life spicy yet sweet candied jalapenos. This perfect combination of salty, sweet and spicy is tucked inside a cotija cilantro tortilla for maximum flavor power. Pair this creative masterpiece with a side of Brick’s signature Pimento Mac ‘n Cheese for ultimate enjoyment; it’s a gooey concoction of cheddar, smoked gouda, pimento, and jalapenos. And while we’re talking gooey, why not indulge your inner child with a s’more for dessert? Their website proclaims, “never trust a good idea until it survives the hangover.” Trust me, you won’t regret a trip to this delicious downtown hub of unique barbecue. Review by: Barbie Dickens Lane
 
1528 State Street, Sarasota, FL 34236, (941) 993-1435
 

Veggie Tacos Tacos To Go Sarasota Manatee

Veggie Tacos – Tacos To Go

Vegetarians share a common issue, veggie tacos are rather disappointing displays of a tortilla with lettuce, tomato, and onion. Tacos To Go sees that challenge and literally crushes it. The corn tortillas are made from scratch, and all tacos are topped with shredded cabbage, pickled red cabbage, pico de gallo, guac sauce (contains dairy) and queso fresco (contains dairy). Then you choose your protein or veggie. I added sautéed veggies and the flavor was amazing for such a simple taco. This shop may be small, but its food has huge flavor. My kids loved the quesadilla and mac and cheese as well. And we all know if the kids love it, it’s a hit! If you want to try something different from your normal tacos, the Cali fries are a must. They put all the taco fillings on top of french fries with your choice of protein or veggies for a delicious spin on loaded fries. Under new ownership, this place has had a beautiful remodel, and even more amazing flavor. Review by: Michelle Leon
 
2773 Bee Ridge Rd, Sarasota, FL 34239, (941) 922-8226
 

Manny's Tacos to Go Sarasota Manatee

Any Taco – Manny’s Tacos to Go at Nick’s Bar

There’s no better authentic taco place in Sarasota than Manny’s Tacos to Go (or at least I refuse to try another because I’m so loyal!). Only open on Friday and Saturday nights from 5:00pm until 1:00am, everything is authentic, homemade, and delicious. Choose from chicken, seasoned carnitas, seasoned pork, steak, or even cow tongue (the only one I have yet to try!). Toppings include cabbage, pico, and sides of limes. If you haven’t tried these $2 tacos then you must stop by! Review by: Lauren Haney
 
4463 Bee Ridge Rd, Sarasota, FL 34233, (941) 586-6809
 

Wonton Tuna Tacos The Cottage Sarasota Manatee

Wonton Tuna Tacos – The Cottage Siesta Key

If you’re looking to spice up your taco game, this raw Asian-style taco will not disappoint. The wonton tuna tacos at The Cottage Siesta Key are made with finely chopped, sushi-grade ahi tuna, topped with guacamole and cucumbers and served with a trio of wasabi aioli, Sriracha, and a Hoisin vinaigrette. I couldn’t decide which sauce I liked best, so I raked my knife through all three and spread it on top of the tacos. It was perfection. The fried wonton-style shell provided a nice crunchy contrast to the raw fish and the bright, fresh guac. Other standout dishes we enjoyed were the Korean Short Rib and the Lobster Maki Roll. Review by: Vivian Owen
 
153 Avenida Messina, Siesta Key, FL 34242, (941) 312-9300
 

Vegan Chorizo Taco Screaming Goat Taqueria Sarasota Manatee

Vegan Chorizo Taco – Screaming Goat Taqueria

Plant-based eating is becoming more popular every year. It’s so refreshing to know that Screaming Goat Taqueria recognizes this and serves up our favorite comfort food, without sacrificing flavor. Chef Bianca seasons the “chorizo” (extra firm tofu) with traditional Latin street taco flavors. The toppings have a modern twist featuring arugula, sweet corn relish, and roasted pineapple salsa. You can also add other unique options like pickled red onions, cactus paddle-roasted onions, or spicy mushrooms. Of course, you can be extra and add guac, but don’t skip the citrus rice and refried black beans. Yes, the refried beans are actually vegan and gluten-free! The Gulf Gate neighborhood has developed a frenzy for that “hole in the wall” style restaurant and Screaming Goat has definitely made its presence known as one of Sarasota’s newest taco hot spots. You can taste and feel the passion of the family as you savor the taco masterpiece they created for you. Review by: Michelle Leon
 
6606 Superior Ave, Sarasota, FL 34231, (941) 210-3992

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