On any given weekday, when the clock strikes twelve, hoards of cubicle dwellers swarm the streets of downtown Minneapolis to converse and feast on food truck cuisine. It's like moths to a flame. Or perhaps a zombie state of mind: Must. Eat. Food. Made. In. Truck. It truly is the Age of Street Food. Side note: Hats off to World Street Kitchen for enforcing proper line etiquette. (You know who you are, sidewalk monopolizers.)

Mexican delights and delicacies have been a part of this phenomenon for years and years. Let's go ahead and call them trailblazers. No extraneous frills; just quick, honest cooking is what people are looking for more than ever. Andale Taqueria & Mercado in Richfield may not be on four wheels, but their counter-service restaurant with street-style, authentic fare has everything food trucks offer — and then some.

For starters, the parking is prolific (a decent-sized lot considering the location), and outdoor seating bridges the gap between the eatery and market, which adds a nice touch. It's summer in Minnesota, after all. Hands down, the goat taco ($2, above) and the al pastor taco ($1.89) stole the show. Atop two soft corn tortillas resided perfectly tender, fine-grained textured goat (chivo) with a slight hint of mint. The spicy, marinated, mouth-watering pork made you want to become a better person — it was that good. Each taco was accompanied by a hit of (lime) acid, onion, cilantro, and creamy, spicy avocado salsa that provided harmonious textural contrast.

-Isabel Subtil


Since I found this place I have been back well over 10 times. I am addicted to the authentic Mexican food. The prices are great, the variety is wide and the green avocado hot sauce is one of the best things I've ever tasted. Great great place to eat

I was looking for a decent place to grab dinner by myself the other day, and Andale was it. I'd wanted to try it after having driven by a few times... I'm a sucker for a neighborhood taqueria.

I tried the lengua, pastor, and carne asada tacos, and the carne asada was the clear winner. Tender, melt-in-your-mouth beef, perfectly seasoned, charred just a little bit... it was exactly what I wanted.

I also had a giant cup of horchata; honestly, it was the best horchata I'd ever had. I think next time I might go a size smaller (I really didn't need THAT much), but I might go back just for that.

After I ate, I went next door into the mercado. It was a nice, cozy little market, with everything you might want for whipping up your own Latin flavor at home. There was a huge selection of perfectly ripe avocados, and 2-liter bottles of Jarritos... yeah, so I've decided I need to keep Jarritos in my house at all times. My new favorite DIY cocktail: rum and mango Jarritos. YUM!

This is an authentic taqueria, much like you'll find in Mexico.
I had tacos - carne asada and pastor -  on my first visit and they were good. My son had a simple quesadilla, which was quite large for him.

On a second visit, my dad and I ordered menudo. We're pretty particular about menudo, and both of us were happy with it, although I wish it had hominy. It only has the tripe, but the caldo is delicious. We ordered it to go, to enjoy it at home, and I was glad to see they sent along warm corn tortillas, limes, onion and cilantro.

The beans are terrific, as is the agua de jamaica and the horchata. We also ordered a couple of items that I didn't see on the menu - champurrado and enchiladas. Both delicious.

Now, if you're used to hard-shell tacos and the sort of food found at Tex-Mex or American-style "Mexican" places, you'll find this is different. This is a simple, fast-food-styled place, but the food is not "fast food." It's cooked with care and made to order. If you want something sweet after, cross over to the market that is also part of this business and buy some of the pan dulce, which is baked right there.

Addendum: Re the menudo, we asked for two orders and we were given large servings. If you're going to take it home, I recommend you bring your own pot - with a cover - to make it easy to reheat and store. Those two servings were plenty big and my dad reheated the leftovers two mornings later. It was still delicious. In fact, he said it was some of the best menudo he'd ever had - and that's quite a complement.

I returned today to order a burrito for lunch. It's large and the beans are so delicious. Muy rico!