Sweets and I have a fun game we play when we meet for lunch on campus. We chew over our lunch and ponder like greedy kids in a candy store: what other food place needs to open on campus? Indian, Chinese, Koren, Pub, Mediterranean, Italian, Hawaiian, Starbuckian… we have so many cuisine styles to choose from. For awhile our answer would be to lament the lack of tacos on campus. However, our taco ponderings have been answered with our recent favorite: Taqueria El Pato Verde, two and a half blocks off of the University, next to Napoli’s.
Specializing in grilled burritos, this wonderful spot answers the call of the campus wild in its search for campus tacos. All the tacos are available with flour or corn tortillas, and there are quite a variety of meat (and non-meat) options to chose from. In addition, all the tacos can be dressed up with the additonal option of Pato Verde’s sour cream and avocado sauce.
On this particular visit we ordered a carne asada soft taco, a shredded beef soft taco and an el Pastor grilled buritto. The tacos are soft and flavorful. They come with the option of using the house red or green salsas that are stored up in the front of the taqueria. The carna asada taco is particularly flavorful with an earthy grilled flavor and an almost sweet taste that circles the strips of meat. The corn tortilla soft tacos each come swaddled in two tortillas, as is typical in Eugene. We have found that this makes these meals very share-friendly, and a good way to order more flavors to sample from! A single taco’s fillings are ample enough to split them into two tacos.
A favorite Pato Verde item of mine are the el Pastor menu items. This tasty set of flavors are available in both burrito or taco form. I’m familiar with el Pastor refering to pork, often barbecued, however the Pato Verde el Pastor has kicked up this offereing by including chunks of pineapple and thin slices of cucumber with the pork. The combination of spicy with sweet pineapple and cool cucumber is fantastic. This combination also showed off the brilliance (and tastiness) of a grilled buritto in that our burrito never got soggy from the juicy fillings. The golden crisp of the tortilla adds a wonderful level of crunch to the perfect mingle of flavors inside.
Though a step farther out than the immediate cluster of 13th ave food options, Taqueria El Pato Verde is a satisfying meal for those with tacos close to their heart.
Taqueria El Pato Verde, 682 E. 13th Ave., Eugene, Oregon, 541.686.9700