Chef Carlos Salgado, an OC native who spent a decade in San Francisco’s Michelin-starred kitchens, and his sister Silvia began Taco Maria as a gourmet food truck in 2011. In its first year, the mobile kitchen garnered high praise and a loyal following, leading to the birth of a restaurant at The OC Mix in Costa Mesa. Calling it, “Chicano Cuisine,” Chef Salgado meticulously executes a concept melding traditional Mexican and creative American cuisines.
The dinner format consists of a four-course prix fixe with two choices per course where you might find Pacific rockfish crudo with Serrano chili and watermelon jam; jardineros with shitake, chili poblano, queso and caramelized alliums or hanger steak with onion, quelitas and bone marrow. Viva la revolución! Open for lunch Tuesday-Saturdays; dinner Thursday-Saturday. 3313 Hyland Ave., Costa Mesa, 714.538.8444. tacomaria.com