Hawthorne Hideaway’s $1.00/2 tacos

2221 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Portland, OR 97255

I’m not a drinker, but those I was with in Portland are. Knowing this, and knowing I wouldn’t be down for anything unless it was dirt cheap, my Portland friend offered the suggestion of checking out his neighborhood bar, Hawthorne Hideaway for the reason of getting a cheap dinner (which also included lunch and breakfast for us this day).

How cheap? Well, it being a Wednesday, $1.00/2 tacos cheap. No, not $.50 tacos… you have to get two and you have to order a drink- soda is fine. But sold, either way. Off we went.

Arriving on the scene, I noticed that this was more like a restaurant upfront with a noticeably different bar scene going on in the back. The front has a long window but is still quite dark and has plenty of seating for the numbers that were in there around 7:30pm on a weekday. The back is a bit darker, lit mostly by neon beer signs. There were a few patrons saddled up to the long bar, the only seating in this area. We ordered our food, the guys ordered their drinks (I didn’t get anything and no one seemed to mind). We ordered 9 tacos each- 1/3 vegetarian style.

It took a little longer than I thought was necessary to get the tacos, especially considering what they were (standard taco shells with standard at-home fixings minus the good stuff like onions, tomatoes, etc.) and the amount of people there besides ourselves (5?). However, these were $1.00/2 tacos and I wasn’t going to complain. I wasn’t expecting much anyway other than a chance to fill up. When they arrived, I noticed they were mostly filled with iceberg lettuce (not a fave) but came with a nice little side of freshly made pico de gallo- pleasant surprise. I topped the vegetarian and non-veg tacos with the condiment and took my first bite.

Not much to report back. It was a $1.00/2 tacos taco. The shell was the standard blandish but crispy shell I remember eating at taco parties. The cheese was finely shredded and had an okay amount- barely enough to taste it, but the flavor was there. The carne was my biggest beef, though. Just not enough! Most of what I was tasting was iceberg lettuce which I don’t think I need to explain really isn’t a taste at all. The beef that I did taste, however, was well seasoned… I just wish there were more of it. I would have paid $1.00/taco for more beef and less lettuce. Maybe.

My suggestion: go with the beef over the vegetarian if it doesn’t matter to you either way. The tofu used in the vegetarian version had a strange after-taste. It left my tastebuds wanting beef to cover up the flavor. Of course, I ordered more tacos to satisfy that. Why not, when they are $1.00/2 tacos?

Final call: worth it when you’re cheap as all get out. Otherwise, Taco Bell is a better option.

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