Hudson Valley Taco Trail
Posted by Coldwell Banker Village Green Realty on Wednesday, July 10th, 2019 at 2:37pm
Updated Thursday, March 30th, 2023 at 1:47pm
When exploring the Hudson Valley and Catskills regions it's not a bad idea to have a goal, or a guide. How's this for a worthy quest? Eat as many tacos, in as many cool towns up and down the valley as you can. I mean, who doesn't love a taco - or six? Whether you like them soft shell, crisp shell, corn or flour, there's a taco, or twenty, for you! And tacos are THE perfect food-tour food! They're small, and they're usually served up fast, so you can sample a taco at each taco stop and it will be ages before you begin to feel like it's all a little too much. That is, as long as you don't wash each taco down with a Margarita.
The Great Hudson Valley Taco Trail
I had no idea how much we at Coldwell Banker Village Green Realty collectively love tacos. I put out a call for everyone's recommendations, and within seconds every device I own started beeping at me! Then the debates began. The restaurants on this list all got multiple mentions from our team of over 100 taco eaters. So, here it is, The Great Hudson Valley Taco Trail, a loop from NYC through Northern Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, Columbia, Greene, Ulster and Orange Counties, put together with enthusiasm and well-worn by the hungry Real Estate Agents at Coldwell Banker Village Green Realty. Oh! Don't forget to explore the google map at the end of the blog.
Stop 1: The Taco Dive Bar
We're going to start out on the east side of the river in Peekskill. I know, you're barely out of the city! But, come ON, you NEED a taco, and this is a great spot to get one. I eat here frequently because I like to people-watch while I sip a not-too-sweet margarita that's been made from scratch using my choice of one of the 20 or so tequilas and mezcals at The Taco Dive Bar. Since it's right across from the train station and the waterfront park there's plenty of action going on. There's non-human scenery here too. Round-about cocktail time the sunset over the Hudson serves as a backdrop to Carole Feuerman's The Golden Mean. Pictures DO NOT do this sculpture any justice. It's super-cool, particularly in its scale. It's about two and a half times the size of a person, and as the clouds roll by, it seems to sway a bit as though it were a giant balancing just before it flips into the water. I have a great appreciation for its contribution to the Taco "Dive" Bar's pun-nie name too. It's roll-your-eyes clever. Get the pork belly taco.
Stop 2: La Patrona Mexican Restaurant
On to Putnam County! La Patrona in Brewster is known for their.. you guessed it.. Patron Margaritas! Pair one with a flight of traditional corn tortilla, cilantro, white onion, and choice protein tacos. I recommend the al pastor and pollo!
Stop 3: Tito Santana Taqueria
Everyone loves Tito's! It's been a pillar of Beacon's Main Street since 2011. This taqueria has a great atmosphere, fresh food, and an awesome location at the start of the principal thoroughfare. Gather friends; pick up a few catfish, pulled pork, and vegan tofu scramble tacos; and peruse Main Street's mile of boutiques, vintage shops, and art galleries. After browsing the shops on the way back (I urge you to visit Play - it's a local favorite!), stop at Bank Square Coffeehouse for a house roasted cup o' joe and stay focused for the next Dutchess County stop on our taco tour!
Stop 4: Tortilleria Allison
All of the food at Tortilleria Allison is incredible - but you can't deny the authentic street tacos! They're affordable and made with the freshest ingredients. Order a flight of 4 tacos for $15 (you may want to split with friends - we're only on stop 4!) and a pound of home-made corn tortillas for $4 so you can bring the deliciousness home with you!
Stop 5: Gaby’s
There's nothing like a family-owned restaurant that's been in the business for 15 years - they always do it right! Gaby's offers tacos with meat, fish, poultry, or veggies with what is easily the most mouth-watering green salsa I've ever had. Their namesake margarita is also delicious: pineapple tequila, lemon juice, triple sec, and blackberry brandy. This place is special.
Stop 6: Cancun’s
People LOVE this place. No less than five of our agents waxed poetic about it - "hands down the best!". Head up the Valley from Beacon and through Rhinebeck, Cancun's is right in the village of Red Hook. It has a chipper family atmosphere and it's a great spot to watch a soccer game. They've got a full Mexican menu too, so if you want tacos and chimichangas and fajitas and you're planning on finishing your tour here, you're good!
Stop 7: East Coast Street Tacos
"[It's] more than just a bite to eat - it's an experience that satisfies your hunger for fresh, flavory, filling food." East Coast Street Tacos opened the doors to its family-owned and operated business nearly 20 years ago in Brooklyn. Since then, they've spread their wings to Columbia County's Hillsdale and Greene County's Windham Mountain Ski Resort (there's nothing like a crispy shrimp taco after a long day on the slopes!) Plan your taco tour for a Saturday or Sunday so you can taste the flavorful Latin eats!
Stop 8: Gracie’s Luncheonette
Cross the Rip Van Winkle Bridge in Catskill on the west side of the river. Think you're halfway through your tour? Well, not really, there's a lot more taco density on the west side of the Hudson - Catskills people love a taco too! We'll start with Gracie's Luncheonette. We've talked about their doughnuts, pie, and crazy egg sandwiches before here, but now it's time to talk taco. Gracie's does Thursday night tacos with a full menu of taco choices including their house-made choco taco. Everything at Gracie's is always super-fresh and super-delicious. Some taco makers leave you wanting more sauce - Gracie's gets it. Grab a napkin because there's plenty of sauce to go around.
Stop 9: New York Restaurant
New York Restaurant has won several "Best of Greene County Awards" for their new American cuisine. We were at the ceremony to accept our own "Best Of" award, and as we watched them go up to the podium, again and again, we began to understand why; they are both serious and fun-loving about their food. They are exactly the kind of people you want crafting you a taco. New York Restaurant do Taco Tuesdays and they're dog-friendly (so you can bring your dog along and torture him with the scent of a fried fish taco.)
Stop 10: Main Street Restaurant
Cross the border (between Greene County and Ulster County) and head into the Village of Saugerties; first stop, Main Street Restaurant. This was another Village Green Agent favorite! Right on Main Street in Saugerties "Main Street Restaurant" has tacos all week long. Also, their black beans and rice ROCK. The ambiance is a great combo of old-school and new-school kitsch and if you go in for birthday celebration/embarrassment you can slap on a giant sombrero and let everyone know it's your special day, and you want some TACOS!
Stop 11: El Rancho
El Rancho gets a lot of "solid", "delicious", and "consistent" reviews on yelp and it's been a Saugerties staple for years. So, if your palate leans more towards a simple steak taco than towards a spicy Korean bbq taco, make El Rancho a stop on your tour.
Stop 12: Tinker Taco Lab
Oh my gosh, is THIS place a sight for sore eyes after a good hike up Overlook Mountain in Woodstock! Tinker Taco Lab is tucked behind Peace Love & Cupcakes on Tinker Street and has the laidback funky vibe you'd expect of a Woodstock Taco place. You can order at the counter and then eat on a stool, or go outside to the stream-side courtyard and listen as the sounds of nature, and those of a bustling small town commingle. It's kind of Heaven. Oh, and the tacos are really, really good. Thursday night is $5 taco night - ka-ching!
Stop 13: Diego’s Taqueria
Oh, how I love Diego's! First, it's right down the street from our Kingston office (hallelujah); second, they use super-fresh, locally sourced ingredients; third, they have a lot of tacos to choose from on the regular menu and they always have some creative specials to round out the selection. Also, they double-tortilla their tacos. This is so handy! Sometimes you've got a juicy taco that needs two tortillas; sometimes they pile enough taco filling onto your taco, that you can turn it into two tacos. Double tortilla-ing - it's a good thing. Great atmosphere, great cocktails, I say "yum" to Diego's.
Stop 14: Sante Fe
Almost all of us had one of Santa Fe's three locations on our list. Santa Fe opened their first restaurant in Tivoli, where they were wildly successful, and now they have locations in Kingston and Woodstock too. The fish tacos get rave reviews from our agents, and they have some really delicious dinner salads, plus warm marinated olives (so good). They have plenty of options that are specifically crafted for those with dietary restrictions (in other words, you won't be stuck with a sad bean taco with a spritz of lettuce just because you're not eating meat today.) Here's a hot tip, try the buffalo cauliflower tacos!
Stop 15: Los Jalapeños
Our Marketing Director took her extended family here - even the pickiest gourmands amongst them loved it!
Stop 16: Gaby’s Café
Gaby's welcoming atmosphere and expansive menu of refreshing salads, sizzling fajitas, authentic Mexican platters (enchiladas!!), and delectable tacos, have been dazzling locals for 15 years. Here's a great article about owner Genaro Garcia and his "Best Of The Hudson Valley" family-owned restaurant from Hudson Valley Eats. You can't go wrong with any of Garcia's tacos (all served with fresh guacamole - yes, you read that right, guac isn't extra!), but if you'd like a recommendation - the chorizo and de pescado tacos are my favorites!
Stop 17: Hudson Taco
Hudson Taco is the BEST place to end our taco tour. It's modern, industrial-style atmosphere is contrasted by stunning views of the Hudson River and Beacon's hiking mountains. The tacos are affordable (price range $2.75-$3.75 per) and their flavors unique. 4 of my favorites are the General Tso's Chicken (fried chicken/herb salad/pickled fresnos/yum yum sauce), Korean BBQ Shortrib (asian slaw/sriracha honey ginger), Deadliest Catch (blackened catfish/charred jalapeño mayo/avocado/spicy greens), and Mushroom & Shishito (portobello/blistered shishito/queso fresco blend). For the table, order the to-die-for guacamole served with crispy corn tortilla rounds, street corn offered on or off the cob (thank you!), and the HT churros served with chocolate dip and delightful local raspberry jam.
Let us know your favorite spots along the trail. We'd love your feedback!
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