Taco time

Aca Taco is a fine choice any day of the week

CHOWIN’ DOWN<br>Ryan Luster, Dawit Zeleke and Mike Conner sit down for lunch at Aca Taco downtown.

Ryan Luster, Dawit Zeleke and Mike Conner sit down for lunch at Aca Taco downtown.

Photo By Meredith J. Cooper

Aca Taco
133 Broadway
Phone: 894-0191
Hours: 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
Closed Sundays

1000 W. Sacramento Ave. Ste. D
Phone: 343-0909
Hours: Mon.-Wed. 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Thurs.-Sat. 11 a.m.-3 a.m.; Sun. 11 a.m.-9 p.m.

Aca Taco

133 Broadway St.
Chico, CA 95926

(530) 894-0191

Last week Rodger abruptly pointed out that it was my turn to “fly and buy” for lunch and said he wanted me to try some tasty Mexican food in Chico. The department lemmings immediately proclaimed: “Let’s have Enrico pick up some Aca Taco.”

Rodger tells me there are a lot of Mexican food places in Chico. But apparently there is something special about this one, because the department established a doctrine for Aca Taco. The doctrine is simple yet very formal. Aca Taco is consumed only on certain days of the week that create popularly recognized acronyms. For example, Aca Taco can be eaten on Mondays because the acronym forms “ATM” (Aca Taco Monday). The logic applies for other days of the week accordingly: Tuesdays and Thursdays form “AT&T” and Fridays are accepted because of the formation of “ATF.”

However, Aca Taco is never ordered on Wednesdays because “ATW” doesn’t stand for anything recognizable. This rule has resulted in a crusade-worthy, cross-departmental controversy of biblical proportions. Tibor from environmental voices fervent objections to our department’s “clear and overt” failure to recognize the annual Aquatic Toxicity Workshop he religiously attends.

Rodger recommended that I order the chico al pastor (spicy grilled pork) burrito, which costs $4 and comes with a choice of wrap, beans (black or refried), rice, onions, cilantro and sauce. I told Rodger that my burrito should be prepared with a spinach wrap, black beans, cheese, sour cream (each an extra 25 cents) and guacamole (75 cents). Tibor refused to order, preaching that he had recently eaten at Aca Taco. Apparently Tibor supports his pejorative views of the ATW rule every Wednesday by ritualistically eating a chico vegetarian Aca burrito ($3.50; sautéed potatoes, cilantro, onions, salsa, lettuce, tomato, cheese and sour cream) at the Aca Taco in the Nord Avenue Safeway Shopping Center.

Rodger called in our order to the downtown location and ordered himself some pollo (chicken) tacos ($2 each) and something for Sophia called an “Olga Special” (a tortilla-less plate that contains grilled and fresh vegetables, choice of beef or chicken, and choice of beans and salsa for $5.50). Since I was buying and flying, I hopped into Clarabelle to pick up our food.

I arrived, noticeably sweating from my drive with Clarabelle’s top down, and was generously offered a diet soda ($1.50 with endless refills) by Olga, the picturesque owner of Aca Taco. Prices for the menu items range from $1.50 for chips and salsa to $5.50 for combo plates. The menu offers a variety of burritos including a fajita burrito with your choice of chicken or beef, sautéed onions, peppers and tomato. Aca Taco also has vegetarian nachos ($3.50), taquitos (three chicken for $3.75), homemade enchiladas (your choice of chicken, pork or cheese for $5.50). The small staff is extremely courteous and eager to assist patrons with walk-in and phone-in orders.

Olga informed me that our food would be ready shortly, affording me time to wander through the establishment. The downtown Aca Taco is a pleasant and casual mix of Mexican take-out deli, sit-down beverage bar, sports bar and quaint bistro. (There is beer on tap and a selection of bottled Mexican beers.)

Although Aca Taco lacks in presentation, as most take-out food does, I relished my heaping, juicy and plump al pastor burrito. I can’t imagine trying to eat a grande (for just $1 more). Rodger finished off his plate of tacos, which he stated were a “delicious and religious experience.” He also commented that Sophia’s Olga Special was first-rate.

Rodger tells me that in comparison to some other local Mexican eateries and wagons, the mixture of fresh ingredients, quality and price makes Aca Taco a weekly dining event for him. I agree. Compared to other similar restaurants I’ve been to, the food is excellent and the price for the quality is outstanding, and I will gladly make the pilgrimage again.