500 Tacos: Camino Real

A taco a day for 2015 — and then some
Camino Real
8660 Spicewood Springs Road (map), 512-335-5517, www.caminorealrestaurante.com
Hours: 8am-3pm Sun-Mon; 7am-9pmTue-Wed; 7am-10pm Fri; 7am-9pm Sat
Also at: 907 FM 865, Pflugerville (map), 512-989-8833; 202 Walton Way, Cedar Park (map), 512-260-2828
By Mike Sutter | © Fed Man Walking | 04.26.15
If you don’t like the food at Camino Real, you’re in luck. Because at this international Hands Across the Strip Mall, you can opt instead for Cajun at New Awlins Cafe, Chinese at Asia Cafe, hand-carved noodles at Chen’s, suburban barbecue at BBQ 512 or a burger at Short Stop. It’s good to have options. And in the case of Camino Real, you should use them.
The taco: Carne guisada
The best thing to say about this salted gravyboat of a roast beef taco is that it wasn’t the worst thing I had at Camino Real. Respectable heft, tender meat with just enough fat, a little green pepper and tomato. At least there was something to keep the salt company. ($2)
 The worst of it: Camino Real must have a breakfast taco homogenizer in the back somewhere. How else can a migas taco ($2) taste the same as a taco with potato and eggs ($1.75)? Blame it on crumbly, oversalted scrambled eggs, faded corn tortillas and potatoes the same color as the off-white plate that brought them. Barbacoa is dry and stringy in its little corn tortilla ($2).
 Tortillas: The waitress walked off in a huff when the pendejo at my table (me) asked if they made their own tortillas. Um ... they don’t. Cardboard flour and sloppy single-layer white corn. I’d be mad, too.
 Salsa: The same kind of medium-heat tomato/onion/jalapeño slurry you make in the blender at home. Plus cilantro.
The 500 Tacos Project
(Photos by Mike Sutter © Fed Man Walking)