Restaurant of the Week: Taco d’Oro

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Taco d’Oro, 16157 San Bernardino Ave. (at Citrus), Fontana

I was on my way to a Fontana school board meeting, in unknown territory, when I stopped for dinner at Taco d’Oro, which is cater-corner from the school HQ, and down the street from Fontana High. Other neighbors: a vacant lot, a hair salon and a church.

A banner on the Taco d’Oro roof proclaims “World’s Best Pastrami,” a claim not often made at Mexican restaurants. What the heck, I went in.

Taco d’Oro (“Gold Taco”) is a rarity: a theme fast-food restaurant. It’s decorated in Gold Rush style. A prospector statue is out front, and inside there’s a water feature that resembles a mining sluice, a pick and a pan on the wall, swinging doors to the restrooms, wanted posters and other touches of character. In other words, a working-class Claim Jumper.

They have burgers, sandwiches (BLT, cheese steak, etc.), tacos, burritos and quesadillas. I went for the hot pastrami ($6), which came piled nearly two inches high on a roll with mustard and pickles. I would pronounce it an above-average gut bomb.

World’s best pastrami? Please. Fontana’s best pastrami? Possibly.

I wonder how the tacos are…

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  • John Clifford

    You’re a better man than I. I don’t think I’d have the courage to buy pastrami (regardless of a sign) from a taco place. Tooo incongruous.

    Now a taco at a pastrami place ???? Maybe.

    [Curiosity must have gotten the better of me. — DA]

  • Bob House

    Actually, pastrami is among the safer choices at a restaurant you don’t know or that looks a little sketchy. It’s brined, partly dried, smoked and steamed prior to serving — a process invented specifically to preserve meat safely. Hate to be critical, DA, but it appears you did not go stong enough on the mustard with what otherwise looks like a great sandwich.

    [I can take it, BH. The mustard came with, as did the pickles, and you’re correct in surmising that the overall impression was nothin’ but pastrami. — DA]

  • Bob Terry

    All we need to find now in the I.E. is Pastrami Pho…or maybe Pastrami Al Fredo. Just point Mr. Borgen in that direction and I’m sure we will get a nice, rambling endorsement.

    [Another five-star restaurant! — DA]

  • James Rodriguez

    This place was the home for many years of Miguel Jr’s who moved to Cherry and Baseline. I wonder why they never had the dining room open? All they had was the takeout window and the little area where, in your picture, a man is entering. I only lived in Fontana 12 years but does anyone remember if Miguels ever had the dining room and why they closed it? Thanks.

    [It’s an odd layout. I actually asked at the counter if this was all one restaurant or a combination of two. — DA]

  • Andy

    wonder if they have tacos de pastrami?