North Texas Daily

Denton Eats: Rusty Taco lacks shine

Denton Eats: Rusty Taco lacks shine

Denton Eats: Rusty Taco lacks shine
April 29
01:02 2014

Caitlyn Jones // Staff Eater

There’s a reason tacos are in the running for the title of most popular fare for the college crowd: they’re cheap. Competing with the likes of pizza and beer, tacos are quick to make, portable to eat and come at a price that’s easy on a budget revolving around books and bar visits.

Rusty Taco on East Hickory is no stranger to the cheap taco. However, with cheap prices comes cheap quality. The actual venue is great, complete with an outdoor patio, bright blue and yellow tables and a ring toss game. Still, the atmosphere doesn’t make up for the lackluster food that is served.

The menu is posted on a wall, impossible to miss upon arrival to the restaurant. Customers order at the front. My wallet and I were happy to see that the average taco was just $2. Feeling crazy, I ordered two: a potato, egg and cheese breakfast taco (don’t worry, they’re served all day) and a black bean taco comprised of chipotle black beans, pico de gallo, cotija cheese, cilantro and toasted pumpkin seeds.

Rusty also has a variety of domestic and import beers on draft and by the bottle for a fair price of $3.25. They even have a few local craft beers from Armadillo Ale Works and Revolver Brewing.

When my name was called over the intercom, I went up to the counter and was presented with a platter holding my two tacos. At first glance, they seemed okay but as I looked closer, I saw that the cheddar cheese on my breakfast taco wasn’t even melted. They had already broken the golden taco rule before I even took a bite.

It only got worse from there.

The first bite of the breakfast taco confirmed my fears. The scrambled eggs were on the cold side, so it’s no wonder the cheese wasn’t melted.  The black bean taco proved to be slightly better. The black beans weren’t warm either but the pumpkin seeds were an interesting twist. The pico de gallo also added a slight kick because the “chipotle” beans certainly didn’t have any spice to them. However, there were a variety of sauces available to drown the taco in.

Granted, Rusty has to compete with Fuzzy’s down the road but it needs to step up its taco game if it wants to compete for best street tacos.

Denton isn’t the only Rusty location in the area. Owner Rusty Fenton opened up 12 more locations in the Metroplex as well as Colorado and Minnesota, which begs the question: why do people like these tacos?

All in all, Rusty Taco was a sub-par experience and an example of what happens when a franchise tries to emulate food trucks. Sorry, Rusty, but I think Fuzzy’s has already won the battle for below-average tacos but, hey, you get what you pay for.

Feature photo:  A potato, egg, and cheese breakfast taco sits next to a black bean taco topped with pico de gallo, cheese, and pumpkin seeds. Both tacos were $2. Photo by Caitlyn Jones / Staff Writer

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