Despite the weather turning as hot as Mitt Romney’s mom jeans, the Seattle food truck scene continues to grow.
But when I crave a little bit more shelter, I migrate to an 800 square foot bright yellow space in Wallingford serving taco truck eats via a takeout window: TNT Taqueria. I love this non-pretentious joint with its pick-up window, counter seats, and a few tables thrown in the mix.
TNT, the latest addition to the Chow Foods line of restaurants, is not the place to find another rendition of the tried and true recipe on many taco trucks of combining mystery meat with sauce and hoping for the best. On the contrary, TNT gets piggy from Lake Stevens’ Carleton Farms and their chicken from Draper Valley Farms in Mount Vernon, Washington.
When the meat is sourced that thoughtfully, it seems like my duty to go for the braised chicken burrito with green chiles. I like to spice it up with the smokey tomato salsa and the salsa verde. The hottest salsa is a fiery pussycat (albeit a tasty pussycat), with magic amounts of habaneros that do not kill your taste buds, but sneak up on you if you let your guard down. The quintessential al pastor is also a crowd pleaser.
Another standout is the kale and sweet potato tazone with a hint of fresno chiles. The vegetarian dish is a salad bowl loaded with rice, beans, romaine, cumin lime vinaigrette, cotija cheese, and tortilla chips.
After you pick up your order from the takeout window, the next big decision is where to sit. My favorite seats are the two covered tables outside, where you get primetime viewing of the hustle and bustle of 45th. But if you prefer a little more shelter, there are a handful of counter seats where you can spy on the kitchen and some booths with a window view.
I usually stuff myself silly so I have yet to make room for the churros or Mexican hot chocolate. The window is also open to serve your breakfast needs with breakfast burritos, tortas, and huevos rancheros.
If you are feeling like a good ol’ fashioned burger or hot dog, TNT has got those too. You can go conventional with a basic burger or kick it up a notch with a roasted anneheim chile burger. The Sonoran dog is a bacon-wrapped wiener served with avocado crema, pico de gallo and pickled chiles.
This taqueria hoedown is open 8am-10pm every day except Tuesday.
First published in Seattle Weekly’s Voracious on October 16th, 2012