HONOLULU | Taqueria el Gallo Rosa is a no nonsense taqueria, which recently opened a second location at the Ward Centre (the other is in Kailua). The concept was born when founder and chef Paul Bentley (Casa, Si Paradiso), after many years spent travelling to Hawaii while based in Mexico (and elsewhere before that), realised just how hard it was to find proper Mexican tacos in Hawaii. He teamed up with Mexican chef Fausto ‘Tato’ Garcia, who moved to Hawaii, and three months later, Taqueria el Gallo Rosa was up and running.
The menu is inspired by Paul and Tato’s favourite tacos to eat in Mexico, their own experiences cooking Mexican food in Mexico, and Tato’s mum’s recipes.
Simple food made from scratch using the best possible ingredients. Tortillas are made on site, using masa made from whole corn imported from Oaxaca. Beans arrive at the restaurant whole – soaked, cooked, and blended to become creamy refried beans.
On the concise menu you’ll find tacos, along with a few snacks, quesadillas, sincronizadas, cocktails, beer, and non-alcoholic drinks. I opted for a trio of tacos and a quesadilla. Tacos al pastor, birria, and a Baja style fish taco, along with a carne asada quesadilla. All quality.
I particularly enjoyed the taco al pastor, with tender pork marinated in adobo, onion, coriander, and pineapple; and the quesadilla, with charcoal grilled marinated skirt steak and a wonderful blend of melted Oaxaca cheese and crunchy crusted cheese.
Taqueria el Gallo Rosa
1200 Ala Moana Boulevard
Sun, Wed – Thu: 11:00am to 5:00pm
Fri: 11:00am to 7:00pm
Sat: 11:00am to 8:00pm