I love street food. There’s nothing like eating a delicious tidbit of something good and messy and cheap while sitting on a curb or on a plastic stool, hunched over a cardboard tray, breathing fresh air all mixed up with smoke from the food cart and a bit of car exhaust. It’s spontaneous and all about the food in a way that’s hard to replicate in a restaurant.
I also love tacos. And Seattle has some great taco trucks, scattered around town in parking lots. But there are plenty of times that it’s just too cold/rainy/trafficky to bother stopping at a taco truck, and there is also something to be said for a clean comfortable restaurant where one can actually sit and carry on a conversation and have a drink.
When we ate at TNT Taqueria in Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood last week, it was the best of everything. A neighborhood storefront restaurant with a walk-up window and outside seating as well as a few tables inside. A full menu featuring tacos made with local, well-sourced meat. And multiple fresh salsa options. Oh, mercy!
I went a little nuts and had five tacos. Yes, five. The Pollo, the Chili Braised Beef, the Al Pastor, the Chorizo Verde, and the Hominy Hash.
There is nothing like eating a plate of crazy good tacos on a golden late-summer Seattle evening while chatting and watching the passersby strolling along outside the window–and occasionally doing a little unabashed finger-licking. I’m telling you, there was joy in my belly.
Here’s why I’m telling you about this particular meal, even though you might live somewhere else and can’t go to TNT Taqueria, or maybe tacos just aren’t your thing. The important question is: Where can you go to get a little joy in your belly? What meal makes you blissed-out happy? Is there a particular kind of food or a specific style of restaurant, or maybe just one restaurant in particular where time slows down and everything glows a little around the edges and your fingers and toes tingle with contentment?
This is your call to action: Go there. Order your favorite dish and revel in the simple pleasures of good food and drink and company. Go often.
If you don’t know where that place is yet, you have a delightful quest to fulfill. Go find it.
Life moves fast. Take a little time to feed your belly and find your joy.