There’s no worse way to end an enjoyable morning at a world-renowned museum than by clouding it with crappy, artless food -- which is exactly what Houstonians have been forced to do for so many years. Despite the presence of 15+ respected attractions, the Museum District has traditionally been a black hole of culinary decency. Until now. Enter Bodegas Taco Shop.
Tucked into a nondescript office building at Binz and Caroline sits the newest taco shop to grace our fair city. If you’ve been to any other taco/burrito joint in town, you know the drill: Choose your vessel (burrito, tacos, nachos, tostada), add your protein (rotisserie chicken, fajita steak, ground sirloin, carnitas, or veggies), and then stock it up with any number of the 30 toppings, sauces, and salsas.
Be sure to show up hungry. Hulking nacho bowls will feed an army of angst-filled teenagers, fresh from the latest IMAX at the HMNS. Art-gawkers will love the symmetry of the fish tacos, not to mention the outstanding coleslaw on top. There’s a full kids menu for any post Children’s Museum meltdowns. And Rothko Chapel fans will probably head straight to the bar. Not that I blame them -- the margaritas are dazzling. Stick with the on-the-rocks classic, though. Made simply with tequila, fresh lime juice, and agave nectar, these puppies are among the best in town. Avoid the sticky-sweet fruit margaritas -- they’re just the regular ones with added powder flavoring.
Bodegas truly gets it right on every aspect, except one. And it’s a big one. Meats are high quality, moist, and fresh, but have little flavor of their own. We’ve all heard the gripes about over salting, but come on. Give it a sprinkle! Oh, they try to hide the seasoning dearth with snappy lettuce, juicy tomato, and some addictively fantastic salsas, but it’s there. Watching, waiting, begging to be remedied. Carnitas, chicken, fajita steak, fish... All the same.
Despite its lack of signage, limited parking, and saltless meats, Bodegas provides a satisfying lunch in an area of town with museums a plenty, but limited culinary reach. I hope this one -- like so many others -- is not a traveling exhibit.
Bodegas Taco Shop – 1200 Binz (at Caroline)