You'll be a taco expert by the end of it.
Forget pub crawls, it's time to take a taco tour.
Ottawa is home to many delicious taco hot spots, serving some of the most creative versions of the Mexican specialty in Canada. You can discover all sorts of different flavours in this city, from shrimp and carnitas to al pastor and carne asada and support local business at the same time. It's a win-win!
In addition to the traditional Mexican flavours, you can also find tasty twists on the classic dish. With a huge number of places to try, you can make a whole day of touring the best taco spots in town. To help you find Ottawa's most exceptional tacos, you can use Jarritos' Taco Tour Map to plan your trip to flavour town.
A taco a day keeps the doctor away — is that how the saying goes? Either way, with these nine local taco joints, you'll be able to try a different taco every day of the week (or one really special day in particular). There's nothing like a tasty, locally made taco and a refreshing Jarritos on a warm night to really make it feel like summer.
Sí Señor Mexican Street Food
Price: Signature tacos from $5
Address: 506 Rideau St., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Try It: The tacos and burritos from Sí Señor Mexican Street Food were declared the "Best in Ottawa" by Faces Magazine's 2021 Ottawa Awards, so obviously this place made the list.
The owner, Hugo Crespo, was born and raised in Mexico City and wanted to bring his favourite flavours to Canada. Sí Señor stays true to its origins, and you can count on their tacos to have that authentic Mexican taste.
If you stop by on a Tuesday, you'll have the joy of tucking into $4 tacos all day long. There are 12 delicious fillings to choose from (and you're going to want to try them all).
Corazón De Maíz
Price: Three tacos from $15.25
Address: 55 Byward Market Square, Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Try It: Corazón de Maíz's menu is made with love. This Mexican food spot is a Byward Market staple, where you can eat in or take out. Or, if you don't want to leave the house, they've partnered with UberEats for your convenience.
Their menu offers fully customizable tacos that come with beans, pico de gallo, and your choice of beef, chicken, pork or veggie, and seven different sauces (you can choose two).
La Bonita Restaurant
Price: Two tacos for $16 or three for $22
Address: 1079 Wellington St. W. & 1128 Cadboro Rd., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Try It: La Bonita Restaurant definitely keeps tradition alive with their authentic Tex Mex food. If you love that old-school vibe, then you'll love this spot — and their tacos.
There are two locations, though both have their own unique atmosphere that makes for a great experience. Wellington Street is a more intimate and romantic spot, whereas the shop on Cadboro Road is perfect for families. You can expect nothing less than fresh ingredients and flavourful tacos from La Bonita.
Price: Individual tacos from $4.50
Address: 139 Bank St., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Try It: If you're looking for downtown chic, Toro Taqueria hits the mark. It's a fun spot to hang out and eat some tasty, authentic tacos with your pals.
Toro Taqueria specializes in serving guisado-style tacos. Instead of piling separate ingredients into the taco, they slow cook a stew of meats, veggies and spices and serve it "street style," garnished with pickled red onion, lime and cilantro.
They have all the favourite flavours like chicken tinga, carnitas and frijoles, alongside Latin-inspired beverages, such as coconut water and Jarritos soda, to enjoy with your tacos.
Price: Individual tacos from $4.50
Address: 566 Bronson Ave., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Try It: An Ottawa favourite, Burrito Gringo has multiple locations so that you can enjoy this Mexican grill all around the city. They're also available through food delivery services, and they offer catering.
This restaurant has been around for over a decade and they purchase all of their ingredients locally — from their chopped tomatoes and diced cilantro to their juiced lime and seasoned meats.
Enjoy your choice of pollo, barbacoa, carnitas, or grilled tofu topped with homemade salsa and fresh guacamole. They also offer crispy shelled tacos. Is your mouth watering yet?
Price: Two tacos for $14
Address: 18b York St., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Try It: Sidedoor offers the perfect twist on the classic Mexican taco. Served alongside sashimi, donuts, and a bit of everything else, these tacos were destined to be a little different.
To give you a better idea of the type of creativity you can expect here, Sidedoor has a sweet potato taco with almond, halloumi, and wasabi pea on the menu. It's not your typical taco, but it sure is exciting.
This restaurant's aesthetic is Instagram worthy, and each dish is inspired by delicious street food in Southeast Asia.
Price: Two tacos from $10.75
Address: 307 Dalhousie St., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Try It: Another award winner, Ahora has been titled "Top Mexican Restaurant" by the Top Choice Awards repeatedly since opening its doors in 2004. If you live in Ottawa and love Mexican food, you know about this spot.
Right when you enter the restaurant, you'll feel like you've been transported to a vibrant Mexican cantina. Known for their generous portions, Ahora is a local favourite with a solid reputation.
Price: Individual tacos from $5
Address: 380 Elgin St., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Try It: Whether you're looking for a new Sunday scene, a place to perk up your Monday night, or a TGIF celebration spot, El Camino has you covered. The menu is bumping, and so are the vibes.
El Camino is the place to have a great night and even greater tacos. This taco spot caters to everyone, offering creative tacos like Japanese eggplant and cauliflower with matcha salsa to crispy fish and traditional toppings.
Price: Individual tacos from $6
Address: 1082 Somerset St. W., Ottawa, ON
Why You Need To Try It: If you've never been to a taco food truck, now's your chance. Yakko Takko is parked behind District Realty on the parking deck, and they're strictly takeout and cash only.
Yakko Takko is the ultimate after-work stop if you're looking to add some deliciousness to your day (because who wouldn't want that?). Most of their tacos are $6, but you can pick up carne asada, tilapia and shrimp tacos for $7 a pop.
The last couple of years have been tough on local businesses, so why not help them out while treating yourself to some good food? Embark on a taco tour and don't look back. At the end of your journey, may your belly be full and your community continue to thrive.
To navigate your way around the city, use the Jarritos Taco Tour Map to explore these nine spots and find others that'll serve you all the tacos you've been craving. If you have a place in mind that isn't already on the map, feel free to nominate them and share the love.