From taco truck to taco shop: Mamma's Tacos opens Saturday on the south side
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For Des Moines food truck aficionados, this new taco shop on the south side will feel very familiar.
Mamma's Tacos, located at 2811 SE 14th St. in Des Moines in the former Luigi's building, will open at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 24. A ribbon-cutting ceremony will take place at 10:45 a.m.
Mamma's will feature the food truck's popular puffy tacos filled with beef and bean, bean and cheese, along with burritos, enchiladas, quesadillas and tostadas using recipes passed down to the owner, Melinda Burriola, 52, from her mother.
The food truck won 'Best Tacos' at the 2017 National Taco Competition.
"Authentic Americanized homemade would be the key point," Burriola said, describing the new 42-seat taco shop. "At the festivals, we had hundreds of people asking where our restaurant was. People would tell me, 'Please open a restaurant.' So I thought maybe a brick and mortar would be a good place to go."
Lunch and dinner will be served six days a week with weekly and monthly dinner specials like tamales, pork chili and chicken mole making the menu.
Most items are a la carte and $5 or less, with a 'pick two' option for $7.99 — diners choose from tacos, tostadas and enchiladas and then rice, sopa fideo (also called Mexican spaghetti — noodle soup with chicken broth and tomatoes) and beans.
Rice, beans and sopa fideo can also be ordered as a side ($1.89)
Nachos are available in full Mamma meal-size ($6.99) and mini size ($3.99). Appetizers include jalapeno poppers (5 for $3.49), fries ($1.89) and bone-in wing zings (8 for $6.99).
For dessert, Mamma's offers both fried ice cream and bunuelos — sweetened fried dough, shaped into a taco and filled with vanilla ice cream and chocolate ganache (both $5.99).
Non-alcoholic 16-ounce beverages include Pepsi products and sweet tea ($1.99).
Burriola has been operating her sought-after food truck of the same name since 2014. Most recipes for the food truck and the restaurant came from her mother, Grace, who passed away from cancer in 2008. Burriola also works for Conlin Properties, Inc., a property management company in Des Moines.
Burriola grew up in a very large family on the south side with eight other siblings. Her mother was Native American and Irish and her father, Ines, is descended from immigrants from Chihuahua, Mexico.
Along with her sister, Christina, 50, she is training the children in the family the recipes and how to run the restaurant. The food truck will continue to operate in the metro at festivals, parties and catering.
Mamma's Tacos will be open for the first few Sundays to help the seven full- and part-time staff members — who are also family — get more practice for day-to-day operations of the eatery, Burriola said.
Parking is located along the side and in back of the building with two spots reserved in the front for carryout orders.
Location: 2811 SE 14th St., Des Moines
Hours: Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Friday-Saturday. 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; closed Sundays.
Brian Taylor Carlson is the food and dining reporter at the Des Moines Register. Reach him at email@example.com or 515-284-8552 and follow @briantaylorcarlson on Facebook, @BriinDSM on Twitter and @briindsm on Instagram.