I have to admit I looked askance at Takoba when they first opened. I’d seen a number of restaurants in the space over the years and none had impressed. I waited til I received good word from a local Basque that the kitchen was honorable before visiting.
The general state of chips and salsa in Austin is poor. So when Takoba brought out a hot basket of homemade totopos along with a good salsa on that first visit, I knew the kitchen was going to be earnest in their endeavors.
This article concerns itself with chips and salsa so I won’t be delving too deeply into the rest of the menu. Long story short: stick with the appetizers and you’ll do just fine.
And oh the appetizers. Particularly the totopos. Thick, rustic, yellow corn chips arrive in a basket alongside a good, red salsa. As is my custom I inquire as to whether they have a salsa verde as well and am quickly bequeathed with a second sauce.
This is where Takoba really shines. With an impossibly vivid, thin green bowl of liquid fire. The red is merely good. The green is great. Among the best in town.
These totopos are hand cut and fried moments before serving. On one visit they were sputtering with fat they were so hot. I lunged for a salt shaker and the magic of sodium bonding with pure sizzling grease was an epiphany.
Takoba has an enormous patio that fills up nightly with people happy to have a hip spot to sit back and get good and drunk in. The cocktails are well made, the music is always a good mix of cumbia, rumba, salsa and modern Mexican-you might even hear some cha cha.
But my favorite part of Takoba is the chips and salsa. They’re free, they’re fresh and they stand among the best in Austin Texas.
1411 E 7th St Austin, TX 78702