Wapo Taco!, the Mexico City taqueria already making waves in Hallandale Beach, Florida for its authentic, always fresh, incredibly tasty appetizers, tacos, specialties, sides and desserts, is bringing its delectable housemade street food to Coral Gables at 2526 Ponce De Leon Boulevard, in spring/summer 2015. Brought to the United States by veterans of the Mexican capital’s most notable taqueria, the 2,000 square foot, 80-seat Coral Gables locale will also launch an enticing new menu, boasting tried and true favorites from their stockpile of perfected family recipes, as well as refreshing new items designed for the Miami opening.
Roots spread back to 1962 Mexico City, Mexico, when Wapo Taco! owners opened Taqueria El Farolito, a prolific locals favorite that now has 25 locations throughout the bustling Central American city. Cousins Francisco and Luis Musi, whose family’s business pioneered the method of charcoal grilling tacos (creating Tacos al Carbón, now a staple of Mexico City dining), are understandably well versed in the ins and outs of an urban taqueria. Wanting to address the limited offering of authentic Mexican taquerias in the United States, the Musis decided to bring their piece of Mexico City’s genuine flavor to The Magic City. The El Farolito brand has since been sold, leaving the U.S. stores the cousins’ main endeavor.
“In my hometown, a taqueria is a place for all,” states Francisco Musi, cofounder of Wapo Taco!. “Likewise, Wapo Taco is a place for diversity – our inviting, relaxed environment, delicious assortment of made-from-scratch dishes, unique flavors, and affordable prices – are meant for all to enjoy, and we are excited to bring that to beautiful Coral Gables.”
Musi is obsessed with staying true to what he feels has made his family’s taquerias so successful (fresh, quality ingredients, daily made-from-scratch salsas, marinades, stews and tortillas, and ancient Mexican cooking methods and ingredients) and although time-consuming and labor intensive, vows to endure using these ideologies. Diners at Wapo Taco! can thereby count on mouthwatering staples such as all-natural corn tortillas made fresh on a comal griddle from Mexico, grass-fed beef cooked atop an always lit charcoal grill, authentic pastor-seasoned pork and chicken roasted on a spit fire grill, daily housemade salsas, authentic Mexican crema and more.
Similar to its older sister in Hallandale Beach, Wapo Taco!’s inviting decor is both simple and fun. The spacious dining room is centered around the large open kitchen that boasts a white tiled, wrap-around, eat-at bar, seating 22, that shows-off the action at the charcoal grill, double spit fire, schwarma-style pastor rotators, and thetortilladora and Mexican comal, both manned by their talented tortillera. Orange hanging light fixtures and floor-to-ceiling windows set a bright, festive mood. Above the kitchen, five big screen TVs dress the white walls, while colorful mosaic tiles dance on the opposite wall. A large mural displaying Wapo Taco!’s motto, “For the Love of Tacos” adorns the wall above the entrance. Comfy white stools sit along the bar and simple white tables with matching chairs are situated around the dining room.
Musi plans a Monday-Friday Happy Hour from 3 p.m.-7 p.m. with two-for-one beers and micheladas as well as a late-night In the Biz Happy Hour featuring the same.
Wapo Taco!’s first US store front opened in Hallandale Beach on September 15, 2015. The 50 seat restaurant quickly became a favorite among locals in the area and continues to feed crowds of taco lovers daily.
Wapo Taco! Coral Gables, opening late spring/early summer 2015, is located at2526 Ponce de Leon Boulevard in heart of Coral Gables. It will be open Sundaythrough Thursday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. tomidnight. Wapo Taco! Hallandale, located at 1955 E. Hallandale Beach Boulevard, is open Sunday through Thursday from noon to 10 p.m., and Fridayand Saturday from noon to 11 p.m. A two-for-one Happy Hour is offered Mondaythrough Friday from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Phone: 954-456-6969