What started as another “Ulsan Online Facebook Phenomena” the readers of Ulsan Online’s popular facebook page were anxiously waiting the arrival of this establishment. If there was one thing that Ulsan lacked it was a proper mexican restaurant. For years Ulsan people went to Seoul, Busan, Masan and Daegu to get their fix but the wait is now over. O’Taco is here and their menu is bursting with South-of-the-border goodness. That would be the American border in case you were confused…
O’Taco sits along the seaside road just down from Cocky Bar and across from Splash Bar in Bangeojin. While I was sort of annoyed that it was located in waaaay out in Bangeojin of all places, the seaside view and the outdoor patio quickly made me forget any notions of annoyance on this beautiful day. Looking out over the ocean made for a great lunch and I will totally be back to enjoy the views at night.
O’Taco is a chain, but one that I am not familiar with, but they are in Busan, Seoul and a few other places. Also, I am not going to get into whether or not this is “authentic Mexican” or “Tex-Mex” because frankly I am a Canadian that has lived here too long and I no longer know or care what the difference is, as long as it tastes good and is not filled with cabbage and thousand island dressing. What I will compare it to are the other restaurants that call themselves “Mexican” in Korea.
My yardstick for measuring any Mexican place is the burrito. So on this day, I ordered the chicken burrito to see how it stacked up against the likes of Gringo’s and Dos Tacos, two of the more recent burritos that I have had. Upon first bite you could taste the delicious spiced chicken and cilantro. the cheese was ample and definitely not “pizza cheese” like what most of us are forced to use ate home.
The chicken burrito was more of a wrapped taco than a burrito, so it was a little looser than what I would have liked it to be. Thus, eating was a bit of a sloppy affair and one that I am glad that I did alone. Had they tightly rolled it, this burrito would have gotten top scores. The other downfall was that it was a little on the saucy side, but only a little. Again, I like my burritos in a tightly rolled package. However, O’Taco still made a damn fine burrito loaded with flavor and deliciousness. Loosely packed or not, they still have me craving more and that is the main thing!
Their menu is packed with loads of the expat favorites such as enchiladas, tacos and burritos of all flavors from shrimp to cheese and bean. There are lots of items to choose from and you can check out their extensive menu here. The staff recommends trying the enchilada and the nachos as they are popular in the Seoul location.
All in all, O’Taco will be a welcomed addition to the new breed of restaurants in Ulsan. The outdoor patio will be a real treat once the warmer weather arrives like it did today. On Friday there will be an opening event, as to the times and the details, at this time, they are unknown.
Price: Enchiladas 10,000 won, Burritos 8,000 won, Tacos 5,000 won
Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday, 11 am to 10 pm
Location: Bangeojin, Just down from Cocky Bar and across the street from Splash Bar
Directions: Take buses 1104, 114, 107, 106, 401, 108, etc. Get off at Useong Hyundai APT (우성 현대 아파트). Cross the road at the crossing behind you and walk down the hill towards the ocean, turn right at the bottom and follow the instructions above. It’s about a 5 minute walk from the bus stop.(HT to Hannah Rogers)
You can also get off at Hyundai Beach Apartments the stop will be called “Beach-ee Town Ahp” or (비치타운앞) Take buses 104,107,112,114,122,123,127,132,133,401, and 1104 to get there. Walk towards the Hyundai Beach apartments and take a right at the Carpos garage (blue sign) and head right to the end of the street. Here is the Daum Maps link to help you