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Eats Beat: Talkin’ morning tacos, from Torchy’s to Salsa Limón

Posted 9:21am on Thursday, Mar. 06, 2014

Sometimes a “Hey, Bud!” question can’t be answered in a paragraph.

Like: “Hey, Bud! Where is the best breakfast taco?”

The term “breakfast tacos” didn’t come to English-speaking North Texas until the 1970s, when Whataburger arrived from Corpus Christi with breakfast taquitos.

But with an Austin cult craze spurred by Torchy’s Tacos, diners are now debating which taqueria has the truest tacos mañaneros (morning tacos).

Taco authority José Ralat-Maldonado of thetacotrail.com argues that breakfast tacos deserve their own category covering more than egg tacos, including carnitas, guisados or chicharrón.

For most of us, breakfast tacos involve some combination of eggs and (even better) fresh flour tortillas.

A look at a few of the more obvious local taco stops:

Salsa Limón Museo is Fort Worth’s version of a south Austin taco stand. It’s open till 3 a.m. weekends and opens at 7 a.m. daily, serving $2 egg tacos anytime with chorizo, pork, and garlic potatoes nestled into a handmade tortilla with plenty of jalapeño cream salsa; 929 University Drive, 817-820-0680, salsalimon.com.

Esperanza’s Bakery & Cafe made Texas Monthly’s lists of Texas’ best Mexican restaurants and best breakfast cafes. It serves simple tacos with chorizo, eggs, bacon or eggs Mexicana on fresh tortillas; 2122 N. Main St., 817-626-5770, or 1601 Park Place Ave., 817-923-1992. joets.com.

The Fort Worth-based Fuzzy’s Taco Shop chain offers bacon, egg, chorizo, shrimp or potato tacos with a side of jalapeños or the company’s “Butt Burnin’” hot sauce; various locations, www.fuzzystacoshop.com

Dallas-based Café Brazil’s Fort Worth location has breakfast tacos with egg, chorizo, turkey, chicken or veggies on white or wheat tortillas; 2880 W. Berry St., 817-923-7777, cafebrazil.com .

Daybreak Cafe & Grill is a simple working-class breakfast cafe with inexpensive tacos and garlicky salsa. It opens daily at 5 a.m.; 2720 White Settlement Road, 817-335-0805.

(Until the Ruiz family sold Fernandez Cafe, it might have served the best, if only for the on-request “hot-hot” sauce. Send nominations for off-the-beaten-path tacos to bud@budkennedy.com.)

• In west Fort Worth, The Original Mexican Eats Cafe is nearly 90 years old. But the city’s original Tex-Mex hangout is also constantly changing.

After 90 years, for example, The Original is now open for lunch and dinner seven days a week.

Green chicken enchiladas are an off-menu special. And The Original now opens weekday mornings to sell breakfast tacos, salsa and pralines to go.

There’s valet parking weekends at the back patio entrance on Byers Avenue; 4713 Camp Bowie Blvd., 817-738-6226, originalmexicaneatscafe.com.

• With all the burger grills and future burger grills in the West 7th shopping district, it’s easy to forget the Lucky Strike bowling alley also has a chef-driven menu.

Lucky Strike’s March burger is the “Lucky Patty” Irish burger topped with white cheddar and the Irish cabbage dish called colcannon, topped with Guinness gravy.

It’s open for lunch, dinner (and bowling) daily; 2845 W. Seventh St., 817-566-1470, bowlluckystrike.com.

• Tickets and a schedule for the Fort Worth Food and Wine festival March 27-30 are now available online.

Events range from $500 for a Dean Fearing lunch onstage at Bass Hall to a $50 food truck tasting; fortworthfoodandwinefestival.com.

Bud Kennedy’s column appears Wednesdays in Life & Arts and Fridays in DFW.com. 817-390-7538 Twitter: @EatsBeat

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