Tacos at their street-food best at downtown Ithaca’s Gorgers Taco Shack

The taco, the whole taco, and nothing but the taco. That’s what 14850 Dining is finding on the Commons, thanks to Gorgers Taco Shack. A second venture from the folks who brought us Gorgers Gourmet Subs, this taqueria focuses on the simple street-food staple, the taco, but filled with fresh ingredients and creative sauces.

A taco trio at Gorgers Taco Shack for just $7.

A taco trio at Gorgers Taco Shack for just $7.

We’d expect nothing less — Gorgers Subs bakes their own bread, invents their own sauces, and piles fresh, local produce on their sandwiches. That’s also the approach at Gorgers Taco Shack, starting with fresh chicken, pork, or a vegetarian pinto bean mixture on flour tortillas.

There’s nothing unusual about a chicken taco with tequila lime sauce, but how about white clam sauce? That creamy concoction worked surprisingly well with the chicken, set off with a sprinkle of parsley. Or a pork taco topped with a recent peach pumpkin BBQ sauce, made with actual pumpkin, none of the pumpkin spice syrup that’s all over town every fall.

Black bean and corn salsa? Chicken topped with spinach artichoke dip? Spicy Buffalo-style sauce and bleu cheese? Pho sauce with sriracha mayo? These are some of the creative combinations we’ve seen, and the menu keeps changing, with anywhere from four to eight tacos on the menu at a time.

Tacos are quick and easy street food — they’re supposed to be cheap — and Gorgers Taco Shack has the right idea. Need just a late-night snack? One taco is $2.50. Ready for a full meal? Any three tacos cost $7. Since Gorgers Taco Shack opened two years ago, they’ve added gluten-free burrito bowls and nachos to the menu. There’s also bottled water for a perfectly reasonable buck, or a delicious and spicy fresh-juiced ginger lemonade, for $3.

Like all good street food, this simple storefront is open for lunch and supper, and into the wee hours, past last call, Thursday through Saturday nights. Find Gorgers Taco Shack on the Commons at 111 East State Street, or give them a ring at 607-272-1100 and tell them you heard about them here.

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