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ITHACA, N.Y. — A narrow hallway connects two worlds that go hand in hand – on one side of the building, Loco Cantina, and on the other, Luna Inspired Street Food. This harmonious pairing on Stewart Avenue combines libations with the kinds of comfort food that revelers around the world crave after consuming said libations. Perhaps the most quintessential combination of cocktail and cuisine is the taco and margarita. It’s so classic, in fact, that Luna offers this match made in Mexico for half price, from 4-6pm on any given day.
I stopped by to see how Loco and Luna assemble this meal worthy of its own happy hour. At the bar, Oni walked me through his own margarita recipe, which includes an unexpected but refreshing splash of orange juice. Just for posterity’s sake, I also got to try one of their frozen margaritas which Oni mixed with strawberry puree. A favorite of moms at all-inclusive hotels in Cancun? Perhaps. But on a rare balmy day in Ithaca, it was just what I needed.
Two drinks in hand, I crossed the hall to Luna. In the kitchen, Matt chopped, grilled, and piled together one order of carnitas tacos and another plate of Korean short rib tacos, expertly crafting the type of food truck fare that Luna is inspired by. Unlike so many American taco joints that miss the mark, Luna serves their tacos up on corn tortillas sauteed in oil, como Dios manda! Fellow gringos, take note: leave the dry flour tortillas for breakfast tacos and Taco Bell.
The two for one deal doesn’t exactly mean that you have to order two margaritas and two plates of tacos, but no one’s stopping you!