Day 1 of The Great Taco Battle already had some drama and upsets that have made this one of our most interesting contests.
Lackwanna’s Cantina 62 wins the first match against La Galera of Niagara Falls. Cantina 62 is a newcomer to the scene that offers traditional tacos as well as a “beef on weck” taco with caraway and horseradish and a “Buffalo Shrimp Taco” with tempura shrimp, hot sauce, Blue cheese, and a celery/carrot slaw that I couldn’t get enough of when I stopped in. It’ll be interesting to see if the Lackawanna pride that came out so hard for Imperial Pizza shows up for neighborhood tacos as well.
The La Divina program of Kenmore & Williamsville handily shutdown Coyote Café of Hamburg, with an expected large margin. La Divina was among the first to bring authentic Mexican street tacos to Western NY, and after a few bumps and some press last year, they seem to have retained their market share and following. They will likely have a big showing through the end of the tournament.
In an odd but not unexpected twist, Hangover Favorite of the 1970’s Mighty Taco – with locations in almost every town in Western NY – upset 7 seeded Cantina Loco of Allentown. While we thought that the Allentown favorite known more for their drinks than their tacos would garner the twitter votes, it wasn’t a huge surprise that Mighty had sufficient love to push ahead. As a side note, this battle garnered the largest number of votes by a big margin – which tells me some out-of-towners are twittering nostalgia for the days when Mighty ruled the taco scene.
The final battle pitted number 1 seeded Lloyd’s Tacos against Arriba Tortilla of East Aurora and a crushing 78% to 22% dispensed with that rather quickly. With its army of food trucks, brick and mortar shops, television appearances, and Ice Cream Stand we expected Lloyd to get about 68% of the vote. The remaining 10% likely came from Donnie’s hat.