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Enter Skinny and Leave Chubby at Taqueria Amigo Chino

Nacho platter and tampiqueña   Photo: Jeff Marini

A sign on the front door of Taqueria Amigo Chino reads “Aquí entran flaquitos y salen gorditos.” I would like to believe this is Spanish for “Hello, fat boy, we’ve been waiting for you” or “Seriously, dude, how many edibles did you take?” But apparently it means “Here you enter skinny and leave chubby.” This is not an exaggeration.

Fancy some tampiqueña? Then please enjoy a groaning board ($26.95) piled with not one, not two, but three entire skirt steaks. They arrive heaped like sandbags alongside enough rice, refritos, and guacamole to feed Peoria. What appears to be a large stack of tortillas is, in fact, a large stack of quesadillas, never a bad thing. It’s all pretty good — the meat juicy, the guac creamy — and you can’t help but delight at the excess.

I don’t find much to applaud in a torta featuring dry chicken milanesa ($9.50) with a smear of gluey refritos, but the tacos al pastor ($2.10 each) are well seasoned and I doubt I could finish two. But best of all are the looks of surprise, shock, and awe in the eyes of fellow customers as their mile-high nacho platters land with the thud of a thousand wedding centerpieces.

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