Dining Reviews

Foodie File: De La Hacienda

fdfile haciendaTaqueria’s manager on tortilla textures and celebrity sightings 

People know De La Hacienda Taqueria for its unique tortillas and salsa. We sat down with manager Alejandro Aparicio and talked about the restaurant, Aparicio’s family and some celebrity sightings, too.

GT: I love these ornate wooden chairs.

Alejandro Aparicio: They’re very authentic. The posture on them—you’ve got to be very upright, though.

The texture of your flour tortillas is interesting and crispy. Where do you get them?

We get them from La Rosa from Watsonville everyday, and we heat them on the grill. We don’t use a press, which a lot of restaurants do. We sometimes over-warm them. We cook the tortilla thoroughly.

Do people ever tell you your burritos taste like the ones from Tacos Moreno?

Yes, it’s the same family, same recipe. We bought it from my uncle in 2000, out across the street from the Boardwalk. It was too much for them.

I notice you don’t carry the birria that Moreno has.

It doesn’t sell here as much. Or the tongue.

Ooh, the tongue’s great.

I like it, too. That’s why whenever I feel like having tongue, I go over there and get a container, and I’ll bring it in here. That’s the advantage of being relatives. Also, let’s say we run out of beans: call them up and pick them up. Or vice versa. Yesterday they were out of cabbage, so we had to give them a case.

Is it true Matt Damon ate here before going to Saturday’s roller derby bout?

I don’t know, but we have a lot of famous people from town who come here, like that surfer, Nat Young. We have Steve [Lenhart], who plays for the San Jose Earthquakes, and a professional skater kid.

Tell me about your salsa.

That’s what made us famous—the salsa. Everyone likes the salsa. It’s very elaborate. Everything has to be roasted.

INFO: 354 Washington St. Santa Cruz, 427-2200.

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