In the mood for a good meal but don’t want to trek out of College Park? Taqueria Habanero has got you covered. I checked it out with the #SpoonGang last weekend and found myself pleasantly surprised with the unique menu, high-quality food, and interactive experience.

Located across from The Varsity, Taqueria Habanero is a small joint founded by a couple who were looking to share their Puebla, Mexican cuisine with DC. Their first location in Columbia Heights had lines out the door before they chose to open a second location in College Park last December.

Lucy Bedewi

The menu featured a variety of starters, including staples like Freshly Made Guacamole and Nachos, as well as some unique dishes like Ceviche de Arturo and Flautas. Aside from starters, the menu also featured salads, a variety of mains, and had a page dedicated—to quote the menu—WHAT WE ARE KNOWN FOR!!!! (tacos).

Our table ordered some Freshly Made Guacamole to start for the table, as well as a variety of meat, veggies, and fish tacos, sopes, and fajitas. Here is what we thought:


The guacamole was made tableside in a Molcajete, and it was cool to watch them combine and mash the avocados, onions, lime, tomato, and avocados together into a nice balance of flavors. An added bonus, they make you a huge portion so it is a perfect starter if you are in a large group. You also have the benefit of getting it spicy or not, depending on your preference, which would be the addition of serrano peppers.

Lucy Bedewi


The fajitas were a very hearty portion of beef, shrimp, and chicken served with well-seasoned rice and beans. However, the meat was overcooked and disappointingly came on a cold skillet, which takes away much of the wow factor you typically get when ordering fajitas.

Lucy Bedewi


The tacos, in general, were all extremely flavorful and the tortillas felt homemade. Plus, at $3-4 apiece, they make a great budget menu item. The Pulpo Taco (octopus) was a very interesting, unique taco that we’d recommend, as well as the Nopales (cactus), although they may be an acquired taste to some. The Salmon taco came with guacamole and sriracha mayo, and all those flavors made it a little overwhelming. The Carnitas Taco was made with high-quality pork, it fell apart but also had a nice crisp on the edges and had just the right amount of pickled onions to balance the flavor. The Al Pastor Taco was a burst of flavor, and had a nice balance of savory and sweet, but was extremely oily and messy to eat.

Hanna Zakharenko


The Sope with steak was another favorite, with its homemade corn shell with toppings and well seasoned and cooked steak, it is a must-get.

Lucy Bedewi

Overall, our experience at Taqueria Habanero was lively and full of flavor, but some dishes did disappoint in the slightest. It was made up for in great service and the interactive experience, and it catered well to our group of six. Whether you are looking for a couple of cheap tacos or a big portion of fajitas, Taqueria Habanero serves authentic Puebla cuisine straight from a strip mall out of College Park, making it convenient and, to many, a hidden gem.