Valentina’s Tex-Mex BBQ

By Austin Cowan
Assistant Web Content Manager

Valentina’s is hands down one of the best taco spots I have ever been too. Located in Austin, TX, this restaurant is unique because they combine Tex-Mex with BBQ. Their food is so well known that people literally come from all over the country to try it. I jumped onto this bandwagon and instantly became a Valentina’s fan when I sank my teeth into a brisket taco. I decided to tell the world of my Valentina’s experience, so read below to find out what makes this place so lovable.

Location

Valentina’s is located at 11500 Manchaca Rd, Austin, TX 78745.

The Food

The BBQ at Valentina’s is some of the best there is. Chef Aaron Franklin of Franklin BBQ actually eats here. Yes, one of the best BBQ chefs ever likes the food at Valentina’s. Check out the video below and watch Aaron speak for himself.

The tacos at Valentina’s are a modern American style because they combine Tex-Mex with BBQ. Texas Monthly actually ranks the tacos at Valentina’s as the top taco in their list of best tacos in Austin, Tx. When I visited Valentina’s, I arrived during their breakfast hours, As soon as I walked up I was greeted with the pleasant smell of the BBQ cooking and was impressed by how Valentina’s is scheduled to close when they run out of food. I ordered two tacos when I went there: the potato, egg and cheese taco and the sliced brisket taco.

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The delicious potato, egg and cheese taco (left) alongside the sliced brisket taco (right). Photo by Austin Cowan.

The potato, egg and cheese taco was great. The ingredients are all homemade so that tortilla was soft and the eggs were fluffy. The brisket taco was my personal favorite (which makes sense because the brisket is a fan favorite here). The brisket was mouthwatering. Eating this taco basically felt like eating brisket within a tortilla casing. After I finished this taco, my brother, Jimmy Cowan, who ordered the Real Deal Holyfield, let me try his taco. Customers can choose to get this taco with either brisket or pulled pork– Jimmy chose brisket. The Holyfield almost made this thirty-two year old man cry. The yoke of the fried egg drips throughout the rest of the taco angelically so customers can taste both the brisket and egg in every bite they take. Those three tacos are all that I tried when I visited Valentinas, but are the reason I will be returning here soon to try their fajitas and pulled pollo.

The Environment

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The “front of house” section of Valentinas, lined with picnic tables and decorated with beautiful lights above. Photo by Austin Cowan.

Once customers have made it to the front of the line they order their food outside a food truck and then wait at one of the picnic tables for their food to be brought to them. Customers can choose to sit either at the front of the house or back. The front of house is a pavilion with a couple rows of picnic tables underneath it. The back of the house is my personal favorite because the patio roof is laced with cafe lights and country music is played back there. I really enjoyed the atmosphere this place has because I felt like I was in a small Texas town, despite the fact that I was in south Austin. One interesting fact I learned about this place is that Valentina’s is family owned. I did some snooping on the restaurant’s website and read about how the Vidal family have worked hard for many years now to bring their families passion to the rest of the world. According to their website, Miguel Vidal and his wife, Modesty, work at the restaurant every day, so be sure to tell them hello next time you visit.

Valentina’s has done a great job at representing both Tex-Mex and Texas BBQ in their own unique way. It is such a lovable restaurant because the people there love what they do. And lastly, the tacos are to die for. Don’t just take my word for it, go try it out for yourself.

Featured image by Austin Cowan

Jashel Negron

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