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Andy’s Local Spotlight – Herradura Vieja

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I think it should be a right that everyone has access to amazing Mexican food, don’t you?

Personally, I’m a massive fan of Mexican food in all of its forms, but tacos are my favorite. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not talking about the tacos you make at home (although there is nothing wrong with a spicy Old El Paso taco). I’m talking about authentic tacos made with fresh ingredients that have a zing to them. 

If what I just said made you say, “hey me too!” then I have a recommendation for you! 

Herradura Vieja is Chelmsford, Massachusetts is a bit of a hidden gem. Located in a bit of a non-descript building right outside of the center of town its easy to drive by but, make sure you don’t! I’ve visited a few times and had take out as well, Herradura Vieja has yet to fail to impress.

Let’s start with the chips and salsa.

The chips themselves are good, but the salsa is the star of this duo. The salsa is the thinner type, which normally takes points off, but in this case the taste makes up for it. Slightly spicy, but more flavorful than anything else, the salsa tastes fresh. The tangy tomatoes and zesty cilantro give it a boost of flavor that brings it past the typical salsa taste.

Normally, when you order a smothered burrito you can expect it to be soggy, not here.

I was impressed with the way that the burrito held together on my fork. I’m sorry, but there is something off putting about soggy food. The Burrito D-LUXE plate was more than enough for a meal. This plate consists of two burritos, one filled with chicken and the other with beef, covered in a ranchero sauce that I’d put on just about anything. The sauce was light, with the classic ranchero taste but it has a twist that I can’t figure out which pushes it past the classic version. I can’t tell you which type of burrito was better because both tasted excellent, but I’m partial to beef overall. A great dish overall!

Now its Taco time!!

Street tacos are in my top 5 foods and Herradura Vieja is doing their part to keep them there! The choices are chicken, steak or carnitas, I ordered one of each type, purely for research purposes of course! I asked to have them topped with lettuce and cheese, because cheese makes everything better, but if you want, they also come topped with onions and cilantro. All three were very good, however I have a clear favorite. The chicken and steak were both flavorful. Grilled to perfection, juicy, with a great taste of garlic and the characteristic Mexican spices they were terrific. However, the absolute big hitter out of this group is the carnitas! Slightly salty (as they should be), juicy and with the crisp you only get from broiling, these are my favorite menu item at Herradura Vieja. What really makes these so good is that they aren’t heavy and greasy, which is typically a problem with carnitas. 

Top all of this off with a cold beer or margarita and you’ve got an excellent spot for a date, night out or just to have a meal. Overall, I give Herradura Vieja the Andy’s Local Recommendation. Stop in, tell them I sent you and enjoy your meal!

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Andy Nazzaro

Andy Nazzaro