What Happened to Trusty Taquerias Arandas?

19 May

In the short summer that I lived in Houston three years ago, I visited the popular Taquerias Arandas chain (and the Arandas Bakeries) on several occasions for trusty, authentic Mexican fare. I was excited to discover that they also have a few locations in Dallas, and decided to give the one on I-35E in Carrollton a try for a quick weekend lunch.

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I was surprised to see the store mostly empty. In what appeared to be an old Denny’s, there were only a couple of tables of diners. We sat down in a booth and proceeded to order some fast food fare, three tacos and a strawberry licuado for me and two gorditas and a michelada for my companion. Chips and salsas were brought out soon after.

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Three salsas: a mixture of avocado, sour cream, and cilantro for the green sauce, a mild fresh red salsa, and a fiery roasted red salsa. They were all pleasant on the greaseless chips.

Unfortunately, the food was only average, not like what I remembered from dining at the Arandas locations in Houston.

Chicken gorditas and michelada:

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The gorditas were small and fairly boring. Not enough refried beans to hold the thing together (physically and flavor-wise). The michelada had a nice bite to it, though we thought the mix was on the salty side.

My tacos were equally boring and forgettable:

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The chorizo taco didn’t have much chorizo and was mostly egg. The licuado was delicious but expensive at $2.50 for the small size (the inverted shape of the cup doesn’t give you much volume-wise).

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The two other tacos, one with carne asada and one with pastor, were again just average. The pastor taco didn’t come with hardly any cilantro, mostly onion. It’s not that they were bad, they just weren’t what I remembered from the Arandas chain.

Maybe my tastes have changed, maybe the Dallas Arandas is just that much different than the ones in Houston, maybe this visit was just a fluke. Whatever the cause, there are many other places to seek out Mexican in DFW and I won’t be returning to this Taquerias Arandas any time soon, especially since service was sloppy and slow.

One interesting side note: when I was ordering I thought I remembered the prices being lower so I reasoned that it was because they must have raised the prices a little over the last few years. When I visited the Arandas website, I noticed that their menus vary by geographic location, and the menu for the Dallas Metro locations is indeed a little more expensive than the menu for the Houston Metro locations. Weird!

Rating: 2 / 5

Taquerias Arandas #29
1745 I-35 E
Carrollton, TX 75006

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2 Responses to “What Happened to Trusty Taquerias Arandas?”

  1. luniz 05/23/2007 at 1:39 pm #

    I haven’t eaten there, but I’ve heard it’s not that great. I was posting somewhere else about the Taqueria Arandas in Austin (not Taquerias) and he mentioned that neither he nor his Mexican American wife were particularly fond of it (Taquerias. Fortunately the one in Austin is completely different (and as far as I’m concerned, the bomb). How were the tortillas?

  2. donnaaries 05/23/2007 at 8:52 pm #

    The corn tortillas were pretty average.

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