Last week (April 2012) I had a most pleasant business lunch. My dining companion was Paul Hopman, a local artist whose specialty is scratchboard. If you have not had the pleasure of seeing Paul’s work, go to his website.
He suggested the Tucson Tamale Company on Broadway. That worked for me ‘cause (1) I had yet to review this establishment and (2) Tucson Weekly says their tamales are the best in town.
We both arrived at 11:30 AM to beat the lunch crowd, but already there was a line waiting to order. I found it interesting that was there were only a few occupied tables because almost everyone was taking their tamales with them.
If no one told you, you’d have no idea walking in the front door that there are booths in back and a quiet dining patio beyond the back door.
This place is a hole in the wall of a nondescript commercial center along east Broadway. They have tried to make the best of it by painting some of the walls with happy Mexican colors and hanging some original art. And it’s clean.
Paul ordered a Blue Tamale – (veggie) – with blue corn masa, squash, tomato, corn, onion, green chile and cheese, with a side of black beans.
And some chips and salsa to share.
- Sonoran: Chicken with Green Chile Sauce (Green Chile, Tomato, Onion) and
- Santa Fe: Pork with Green Chile Sauce and Cheese
And a side of black beans.
I went for some unsweetened black iced tea from the dispenser, but was told they don’t have lemon. Odd.
Our order came up fast and we seated ourselves on the back patio. Chips fresh from the oven and tasty green chili salsa were a delightful way to begin our meal.
The Tucson Tamale Company has a snappy slogan: Unwrap Happiness. So I did.
Long story short. Service is super quick. Folks are friendly. And most importantly, these were the best tasting tamales I have ever had.
Are they the best in town? I don’t really know. All I do know is that I will be back. Probably to sample their breakfast tamales one Sunday morning. But certainly for another lunch. Highly recommended.
They apparently also do a brisk business in take-out frozen tamales. Will have to bring some home next time.
Ship A Gift Pack
Or better yet, their website says I can order their tamales on-line and have them shipped. They even have Sampler Gift Packs. Now I know what to get my brother-in-law in Florida for Christmas.
2545 E Broadway Blvd., Tucson, AZ 85716