Taquería Ocampo Restaurant

Like the tremulous enthusiasm running up to the premiere of Star Wars: Episode 1: The Phantom Menace and the disappointment that, after credits rolled, threatened to crush the theater filled aghast fans, Taquería  Ocampo Restaurant was a minor lift and a major fall.

The fanfare was perhaps a year in length. Each time the missus and I would drive south on Interstate 35E, Taquería Ocampo teased me from the access road beyond the 12th Street exit. Its covered front patio was perpetually empty. A pickup truck or two occasionally were stationed in the parking lot. It teased me. It teased me with a humble façade, neglected picnic tables and corny icicle lights.

My anticipation had more appeal than the tacos on the wobbly table. That much was clear one bite into the flubber-like, albeit nutty, lengua. Drowning the cow tongue with the thinned Pace Picante at the table’s center worsened the taco wrapped in a peeling white corn tortilla.

The pastor was unidentifiable as pork in flavor. Rather, the threads of meat were wet threads given a charcoal rub accompanied by sweet, sautéed onions. If available, cilantro and chopped onions wouldn’t have resuscitated the pork. The barbacoa laid in a pile within the tortilla, twigs and mulch unsuitable even as detritus from which a bird could build a nest.

Only three tables were occupied in the large dining room to the right of the entrance. Anchoring the Spartan space, a dusty and chipped bar. Yet, the service at Ocampo was as sluggish as a Hutt. Perhaps to make up for it, the lone waitress brought us tiny bricks of red velvet cake when all we had requested was the check. After I asked if all customers were treated to a gratis dessert, the young woman silently returned to the cashier’s box across from the front door, where the check awaited.

Maybe, like The Phantom Menace, Ocampo will improve. I don’t intend to find out. There is only one Galaxy Far, Far Away. But there are thousands of taquerías. This one is worth forgetting.

Taquería Ocampo Restaurant
207 W. Suffolk Ave.


Filed under Oak Cliff

2 responses to “Taquería Ocampo Restaurant

  1. TG

    this one’s pretty funny

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