District of Tacos: Urbanism, Wrapped Up in a Tortilla

$110 USD/person

  • Fee includes everything consumed on the walk
  • Group Size: 2-7
  • Start/End: 6:00pm-10:00pm
  • Duration: about 4 hours
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Tacos might be the most iconic of Mexican dishes, but they are more than just food. In Mexico City they are what the city runs on, with each commercial district – even profession – having its own go-to taqueria to help keep it operating. On this evening walking tour, we’ll go through the backstreets of the historic city center on the trail of Mexico City’s best tacos, from slow-cooked brisket to stewed stuffed peppers, while we learn about what a key thread this dish is in Mexico City’s urban fabric. On the way, we’ll also walk by some of the most important avenues and monuments of Mexico City, allowing us to soak up its history, from pre-colonial times to its buzzing modern day.

Our first stop will be in the Tabacalera neighborhood, one of the oldest union strongholds in the country, where we’ll stop by a taqueria that for decades has been serving the area’s office and blue-collar workers from early in the morning to late at night. The specialty here is steak and chorizo tacos served on a handmade tortilla that you can top with salsa and an array of free toppings offered next to the grill: cactus leaves, mashed potatoes, cooked beans, and pickled onions. From there we’ll continue to a street lined with the offices of Mexico’s major newspapers and, naturally, taquerias that for decades have been serving newspaper delivery workers, setting up in the afternoon and serving through night and until 6am to accommodate their schedules. At a sidewalk stall that sets up every evening under a bright yellow tent, we will try hearty tacos de guisado, filled with slow-simmered meats and vegetables.

Right in the heart of downtown we’ll stop for al pastor, the traditional Mexico City taco made out of marinated and spit-roasted thin layers of pork, at one of the oldest joints in the city, frequented by local store owners and shoppers who visit the downtown commercial area. Our next stop will be for tacos de cochinita, the traditional pulled pork from the state of Yucatan, at a whole-in-the-wall gem unknown to even experienced downtown taco connoisseurs.

Since a city can’t survive on tacos alone, our last stop will be at a mezcalería in one of the trendiest areas of downtown where we will try different types of agave spirits, an important part of Mexican culture since colonial times. Once regarded as a drink of Mexico’s poor, these small-batch spirits have today become appreciated for their craft and quality. Run by serious mezcal enthusiasts, the mezcalería has an ever-changing selection of spirits drawn from micro distillers who often produce just enough to supply their own village or town. It’s just another reminder that in this massive city, it’s the small-scale enterprises that keep things running.