Seeking out good Mexican food in South Georgia is not a task for the faint of heart. This is especially true if you have been stationed anywhere near the Rio Grande and have partaken in the authentic version. But as with everything else, South Georgia has taken authentic Mexican food and added a southern flair offering unique menu items only found locally. Two local restaurants are serving up “must try” southern Mexican food with their own unique style: Taqueria del SurEste and The Bleu Café.
Taqueria del SurEste is located on 3209 North Oak Street Extension off Inner Perimeter Road, Valdosta and serves lunch and dinner Mon-Sun. Translated as “the taco shop of the Southeast,” Taqueria del SurEste describes their cuisine as “authentic Mexican with a strong Southeastern influence.” The menu includes Fried Chicken Tacos with lime jalapeño mayo, Memphis Tacos made with smoked pork, coleslaw and BBQ sauce, a Georgian Taco made with beef brisket and cheese, as well as a Beef Brisket Enchilada.
My favorite is the Fried Shrimp Taco served with lettuce, tomato and a chipotle mayo and I usually order it with a margarita. The margarita is not only tasty but served in a truly southern style, à la Mason jar. I sometimes indulge and order the Queso dip with chips, which can only be described as creamy goodness in a cup. The Queso is so good that I momentarily forgot my self and ate most of it before taking a photo for you. I have not excuses for the empty margarita mason jar…only that once you try it you will understand!
It has become a family tradition to go on Sunday nights when Taqueria del SurEste has all tacos on special for $1.25. The restaurant also offers a 10% military discount, so by time the bill comes you will spend about $5 for a handful of taco’s and a drink. I am always up for a Sunday meals that are easy on the wallet and don’t involve me cooking anything! Although their restaurant website is not working at the moment, you can find most of their menu on the Urbanspoon site: http://www.urbanspoon.com/r/316/1347000/restaurant/SurEste-Cantina-Valdosta .
The Bleu Café is located on 125 North Patterson Street, Valdosta and is open for lunch Mon-Sun 11-2pm and dinner Mon-Sun 5-10pm. Billed as urban casual dining, The Bleu Café has an eclectic menu of pizza’s, tacos’, pasta, and nacho’s. A local resident recently raved about the nachos and claimed they were the best in town—so of course we had to try it! Anticipating ordering the nacho plate, we were thrown for a loop when we saw the variety of southern tacos also available. Similar to Taqueria del SurEste, The Blue Café offers tacos with beef brisket, fried chicken, and smoked pork. My first pick was the San Antone Taco, which came with smoked beef brisket, caramelized red onions, red sauce and fresh cilantro.
As delicious as they all sounded, we took aim at the southern style nachos…since that is why we were there! Luckily, they also had the San Antone Nachos loaded with smoked beef brisket, black beans, onions, lettuce, tomatoes, pickled jalapeños, and mozzarella. The nachos came from the kitchen piled high on a round metal pizza tray and still sizzling. The nachos WERE GREAT, just as we were told. The heaping chunks of beef brisket made the dish a main meal instead of just an appetizer. After finishing the entire tray, the only regret we had was not ordering a beer to with it—the perfect combination. Check out the menu on their website: http://www.thebleucafe.com/ or on the Urbanspoon website: http://www.urbanspoon.com/r/316/1308146/restaurant/The-Bleu-Cafe-Valdosta
Neither of these restaurants are on the short list for authentic Mexican fare but they do get points for offering unique options that cannot be found many other places. Now that you are stationed in South Georgia, embrace the local interpretations of your favorite foods and be happy. See everyone at dollar taco night!!!