For the night owls and party people, saratoga living has learned of a new spot open late in Downtown Saratoga Springs. Taquero Tacos and Donuts is a brand-new eatery located at 68 Putnam Street, which offers, well, you guessed it, delicious tacos and doughnuts, and even more late-night, post-bar-hopping fare. The new Mexican-inspired restaurant officially opened on December 27 and is currently offering online ordering and, in the coming weeks, delivery as well.
“We want to offer late-night food options for locals and people [from] out of town, as well as quick, casual lunch-eating options,” says Corey Melancon, who co-owns Taquero with Ryan Reed and Brady Dillon. “The case was always [to offer] tacos, and we wanted to add a Mexican-style dessert, too.” Those plans changed, though, when the local business trio discovered a state-of-the-art donut maker that could produce nearly 2000 mini-doughnuts every hour. “We thought that was cool, blending the two different concepts together,” says Melancon. “And the donuts sell from morning until the end of the night.”
Taquero’s current menu of house-made mini doughnuts includes blueberry hibiscus vanilla, maple bacon (with real bacon crisps), cinnamon sugar and pumpkin spice eggnog flavors. One could effortlessly eat a half-dozen or more of the bite-sized morsels, and the restaurant plans to change up its doughnut offerings every few weeks.
Also front and center on Taquero’s menu is its choice selection of signature tacos. Melancon says one of his favorites is the Korean Pork tacos, with spicy kimchi and gochujang crema (a type of hot sauce). Other taco recipes include Barbacoa (barbecue tacos with queso fresco), Tinga de Pollo (shredded chicken with crema verde) and a Cauliflower taco for vegetarians. Throw in a rice bowl or some house-made aquas frescas (including creamy horchatas and fresh cucumber limeades), and you’ve got your late-night snack fix covered.
Melancon, Reed and Dillon grew up in Saratoga, and each have about 15 years of experience working in the Spa City restaurant scene. All three met back in elementary/middle school and spent time working at one of Saratoga’s most esteemed restaurants, Siro’s on Union Avenue. “Brady’s father [Tom] owned Siro’s for thirty years,” says Melancon. “The three of us all worked there for over a decade, and that’s how we grew together as a working partnership.” (Brady’s father, Tom, passed away earlier this month; his brother is one of the owners behind nearby Hamlet & Ghost.)
For years, the Saratoga natives had big dreams of opening up their own restaurant downtown. Melancon says that when the spot at 68 Putnam Street became available about two years ago, the three of them knew that they had to have it. They worked with the property owners to design and build their own space, and the wait for the complete Taquero has apparently been well worth it. “We’ve been staying open until about 2am on the weekends [and] as late as 3am,” says Melancon. “Everybody seems very happy about it.”