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May 20, 2017

  • 826 E. Cork Street
  • Kalamazoo, MI 49001
  • (269) 459-8521
  • Website
  • Menu

Kalamazoo used to really be lacking of good Mexican restaurants.  Now, I when I say good, what I mean is the good authentic places where I can just order as many tacos as I can stuff in to my mouth.  We’ve had Mexican places like Los Amigos, which is delicious, but places like that I always think about as the “fancier” type of restaurants whereas what I really want is more comparable to a diner.  Quick, cheap, and incredibly tasty.

Tacos Los Brothers was really the first place that popped up recently that got me really excited about tacos in Kalamazoo.  Then, last week, we stopped in to Lolita’s Tacos which puts out some really delicious tacos.

This week, I finally made the decision to pick up lunch from a place that I’ve been passing for what looks like over two years now without really realizing it was open.

Quekas Authentic Mexican Food opened up a little over two years ago on Cork Street about a block west of Lovers Lane near Corkscrew Party Store.  The new owners took what used to be All Occassions Floral and Gifts and turned it in to a Mexican restaurant.  The building looks a little odd with what almost appears to be a gas station type awning over parking on the either side.  I have no idea what the property was before the flower shop.  That was long before my time in Kalamazoo.

With my move to an office in Kalamazoo, my schedule has changed to a Monday-Friday shift.  I no longer have Friday’s off, but I also don’t have to work Sunday’s anymore.  I lucked in to a rare three day weekend after picking up a shift last Saturday.  J had some plans in the afternoon which worked out with me having the day off, so I was the available one to pick up L from school.

B and I had spent the morning running errands after we dropped L off at school.  We had enough time to stop back at home and drop things off then get back in the car to go pick up L.  I built in a little bit of extra time so we could stop and pick up some tacos for lunch.

The parking lot at Quekas only had one other car in it when we pulled in a little after 11:30.  There was one man sitting in the brightly painted dining room, but there were many others that walked in to pick up carry-out orders as we were sitting there.  The dining room is three sides of floor-to-ceiling windows which, even on a cloudy day, reflected light off the brightly colored orange walls in the back of the space and the decorations hanging from the ceiling.

I went towards the back of the space where there is a counter next to the cash register.  I saw a paper menu on the ledge and grabbed that to look over while the cashier was getting a carry-out order ready for a woman who walked in at about the same time I did.  As she was finishing up with that lady and cashing out the gentleman who was eating in, she looked at me and asked if I was ready to order.

Had we been dining in, I may have strayed from my usual taco order.  They have a number of dishes that sounded delicious including the namesake Quekas.  I actually almost ordered one of those for the kids but thought better about trying anything new.  That never goes over well.

I put in my order for four tacos with suadero on corn tortillas with cilantro (minus onion).  They also do the tacos “Americano” for $.25 more with cheese, lettuce, and tomato plus they have the option for flour shells if that’s your thing….but why?  I also ordered a cheese quesadilla.  L eats lunch at school before I pick her up, so I just got one.  I hadn’t really fed B yet and I figured a quesadilla was something I could hand him while we were driving.

I paid the $13 bill with credit then B and I took a seat at one of the tables in the dining room.  The furniture is all solid wood, very clean, and very bright.  The tables area all set with menus already on the table so it’s a seat yourself type of place when you walk in.

It took just a little more than five minutes for me to notice the waitress was bagging up my food.  I walked up near the counter to wait and she asked if I wanted red sauce or green for the tacos.  I chose the red and she gave me two small cups.

We got to the car and I opened the Styrofoam for the quesadilla.  Cheese was oozing out of the side of the large flour tortilla which sat on top of a piece of wax paper separating it from some lettuce, tomato, and sour cream that could be used as toppings.  I ripped one of the halves in half for B and realized it was a very, very cheesy quesadilla.  I ate some of the thicker parts with the cheese myself and handed him a part that was more from the edge.  I couldn’t watch him eat since we’d be driving and I was worried about him choking on the cheese.  It was a hearty, delicious, cheesy quesadilla that B ended up sharing with L when she got in the car.  They both tore through it quickly and I wish I would have ordered a second.

We ended up meeting up with J in a parking lot before her appointment so she could see the kids after work.  I waited until then to break into the foil holding my four tacos.  I was going to wait until we got home, but they smelled so good, I just couldn’t wait that long.

As I looked over the menu, I didn’t see an option for “Asada” when it came to the tacos.  I did see suadero which I was somewhat familiar with but not really.  I knew the name and that is supposed to be a pretty popular cut of beef for tacos, but it’s not something I’ve seen in West Michigan before.  Since it was the beef option for the tacos, that’s what I went with.

Suadero is a thin slice of beef cut from the chest of the cow.  It doesn’t have the muscles that a typical cut of beef has so it’s much smoother.  It also didn’t really cook up like I would expect beef today.  It was a much lighter piece of meat, but it was very tender and very easy to chew through seeing as how there was nothing making it tough.  The meat was piled in to two toasty corn tortilla shells then topped with a large handful of cilantro.  The tacos were different than what I usually get, but still really delicious.  The meat could use a little more seasoning of some sort, but the texture is what made this cut of meat different and interesting.

Quekas is another great Mexican restaurant in Kalamazoo.  I didn’t really get to explore the menu as much as I would like to, but the tacos are what I really judge Mexican places on.  The tacos I had were different than anything I’ve had in town which helps Quekas stand out.  It’s a place that I’d really like to do some more tasting at and one that I can see us going back to when the Mexican craving hits.


Quekas Mexican Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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