Tacos del Barco opens in downtown Steamboat | SteamboatToday.com

Tacos del Barco opens in downtown Steamboat

Jack Weinstein
Jeff Hubler, owner of Cugino's Pizzeria with wife Danielle, recently opened Tacos del Barco in the freestanding building on the Space Station lot. The walk-up restaurant features quick, affordable food.John F. Russell

— Steamboat resident Nick McDowell didn't expect to get tacos for lunch Friday, but when he saw the Tacos del Barco sign in his rearview mirror, he had to try them.

Tacos del Barco (The 'Boat's Tacos, in Spanish) opened Jan. 11 in the Space Station lot at Seventh Street and Lincoln Avenue. It's open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday nights.

Before he even tried the carne asada tacos, McDowell, 25, thought it would compete with The Hungry Dog for grab-and-go fare downtown.

"This place will be great," McDowell said. "This place will be a hit."

Owners Jeff and Danielle Hubler aren't new Steamboat entrepreneurs. The couple bought Cugino's Pizzeria in 1999 and opened 7th Street Liquor two years ago, but they wanted to try something new.

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"I thought it would be neat to do a product like this, which is fresh, fast and affordable," said Jeff Hubler, who has worked in kitchens since he was 19.

"We thought it was something that was needed in Steamboat," he said.

Jeff Hubler said the tacos — meat and pico de gallo on a soft corn tortilla from Tortilleria Azteca in Craig — are modeled after his favorite taco stand in Mexico, where the couple has another home.

"It's more about authentic Mexican tacos and burritos," Danielle Hubler said. "Minimal ingredients, high on flavor, low on price. More simplistic."

Jeff Hubler said everything is made from scratch. He said the meats, which are made to order, are marinated overnight at Cugino's, and the pico and rice are homemade.

In addition to tacos that start at $2.25, there are burritos that start at $4.50 and quesadillas that also start at $2.25. And when Tacos del Barco is open into the early morning hours on the weekends, it will sell personal Cugino's pizzas starting at $6.

Hungry Dog owner Brad Somers welcomed a new dining option to the area.

"I think it's a good thing because it brings more people to Seventh and Lincoln to our area for food," he said.

So far, the Hublers said that the response has been positive and that they're busier every day.

After trying the tacos, McDowell's earlier thought was confirmed: "Oh yeah, these are awesome," he said. "This place is going to be around for a while."

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