Syracuse students are all about the trendy, healthy food favorite, Original Grain in Armory square. It is hard to not be intrigued by founder Chris Bily's new taco bar, XO Taco, that just opened earlier this month.

Steph Pearson

XO taco serves dishes family style, making it easy to try everything that appeals to you. From tacos with homemade tortillas to specialty margaritas to churros with Mexican hot chocolate, there are endless possibilities.

The Guac

When trying a new Mexican place for the first time, I of course had to start with the guacamole. It was fresh, seasoned perfectly, and came with huge, salty, house-made corn tortillas.

The Tacos

Following the guac, my friend and I each ordered two tacos. The unique flavors in the tacos such as roasted curried cauliflower, pineapple-jicama slaw, chili-tamarind shrimp with cilantro chimichurri make them mini but mighty. Although the tacos are small, they are packed with fun flavors and textures, so I would urge you to order a few.

I tried the roasted chicken taco and the shrimp tacos. The roasted chicken was tasty, but pretty simple. So, if you have an adventurous palette and are seeking bolder flavors, I would suggest ordering one of the other 8 options. The shrimp tacos, on the other hand, were to die for. The shrimp is tossed in a chili-tamarind sauce and topped with an Asian slaw and chimichurri sauce making this taco perfection wrapped up in a tortilla.

Steph Pearson

Pictured above from top to bottom are two shrimp tacos, the Achiote beef taco, and the roasted chicken taco. 

The Dessert

If you have a sweet tooth, you cannot pass up the churros for desert. They are served with a warm chocolate dipping sauce that has a kick.

The Atmosphere

On top of the eclectic flavors and variety, the atmosphere and aesthetic of XO taco is fun and flirty. The walls are covered in industrial neon signs, XO Taco wallpaper, lipstick cases, and lots and lots of red and pink. It truly captures the funky vibe of the restaurant and food it serves.

I highly recommend this restaurant for your next date night, GNO, or quick bite to eat after class. The flavorful food and fun vibe make XO Taco a must-try in Syracuse and I cannot wait to go back.