These Tacos De Guisado at Bordertown Are the Best in New York City

The handmade flour tortillas at Border Town are next level
Nominated By:
AvatarRob Martinez

A nomadic pop up with a big following is making some of the best tacos in New York City. The secret to its success are its made-to-order, paper thin flour tortillas.

Few people understand New York City’s under-the-radar food scene like Rob Martinez. He spent the last year producing hundreds of videos as both a host and video editor for the popular Righteous Eats channel on Instagram. 

After tasting hundreds of dishes from across the five boroughs, he selected Jose Aguilar’s flour tortillas from the pop up Border Town Street Tacos as his favorite dish in New York City. 

More specifically, he picked Border Town's tacos de guisado filled with machaca, a thick stew of shredded beef and peppers rolled in one of chef Aguilar’s handmade flour tortillas. 

"Jose is making some of the best Mexican food in New York City. I knew these tortillas were special the first time I tried them," Martinez said. "But I had never had anything like his tacos de guisado."

The tortillas are made by combining water, imported Mexican flour and lard in a bowl and kneaded until a soft dough is formed. The dough is then rested and weighed then rolled thin before being cooked on a scorching hot plancha.

For the guisado, Aguilar rehydrates machaca by simmering it with fresh tomatos, serano peppers, onions and spices until it comes together in a juicy mixture.

To assemble the tacos, Aguilar rolls each flour tortilla before placing it on the plancha until blisters appear. The machaca is rolled onto a freshly made flour tortilla. That's it.

"I want to share my culture through this food," he said. "My family is from Sonora and this is the food I grew up eating."

Aguilar says some of his earliest childhood memories are of his grandmother making flour tortillas, one by one which she would pile high under a towel to keep them warm.

Aguilar says he is making up to 500 tacos a day, rolling each flour tortilla by hand, one by one just like his grandmother.

"Giving them a fresh tortilla changes everything."

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