IF THERE’S a silver lining to this quarantine, it’s that it has given way to a lot of small home-based businesses to shine. One of which is bringing the flavors of Mexico around Cebu: Taco Loco.
Officially opened last June, Taco Loco Cebu was started by international chef and entrepreneur Denise Nabong. The 27-year old-Cebuana, who is now based in Canada, came to the Queen City for a short vacation this summer and was already scheduled to fly back in May. But alas, the pandemic happened and with that, came cancelled flights.
Rather than sulk over her spoiled itinerary, Denise was determined to make productive use of her time under lockdown in Cebu. Equipped with a Master’s Degree in International Hospitality Management and experience in some of the world’s top hotel chains, she decided to start a food business with the full support of her family.
Inspired by travel and Mexico’s vibrant cuisine, Taco Loco serves classic Mexican food with focus on quality and authenticity. It makes use of locally sourced produce to not just ensure freshness, but also to help support the farmers who are direly affected by the pandemic.
Taco Loco takes pride in making most of its ingredients from scratch, from the tortillas to the sauces. Everything is freshly prepared and preservative-free as well. Currently, Taco Loco has a small yet well-curated menu comprised of three stellar items: Taquitos, Elotes and Horchata.
Taquitos is homemade tortilla filled with cucumber, green tomatoes, red onions, a protein of choice (classic ground beef, BBQ pulled pork or BBQ chicken) and then drizzled with Taco Loco’s house aioli and hot sauce.
Elotes is grilled corn on the cob, a popular street food in Mexico. Taco Loco’s take on this Mexican staple involves a generous coating of mayo, cheese, dried spices, a drizzle of hot sauce and a light garnish of dried parsley.
Wash everything down with Horchata, a sweet milk beverage made mainly from rice and almonds with a hint of cinnamon — the perfect balm after devouring a set of spicy Taquitos.
As of now, Taco Loco operates solely online and caters to deliveries but Denise hopes to open a brick-and-mortar taqueria in the future to bring the full Taco Loco experience to Cebuanos once things are back to normal.
It’s only been over a month since the opening, but repeat customers have already been clamoring for an expanded menu. “We are currently busy with menu development and we will be introducing new items very soon,” teased Denise. Some of the new items will be quesadillas, tamales and nachos, to name a few.
It’s a fact that foodies of Cebu are always on the lookout for new things to try with two things in mind: Taste and value. Taco Loco, with its thoughtful yet no-frills Mexican fare, just happens to tick both of those boxes.