Ernesto’s Taco Shop in Cutler Bay, Florida

Ernesto's Taco Shop in Cutler Bay, Florida
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One of my friends loves Ernesto’s Taco Shop (20095 S Dixie Hwy Cutler Bay). So she asked me to meet her for a late lunch and claimed to have a surprise for me.

As I walk up to the door at Ernesto’s Taco Shop, I see the surprise. It’s an intact 1940s-1950s terrazzo floor from Royal Castle.

Wow, what a find, and it’s a beauty.

Royal Castle Terrazzo Floor at Ernesto's Taco Shop in Cutler Bay
Royal Castle Terrazzo Floor at Ernesto’s Taco Shop

After Royal Castle BUT before Ernesto’s Tacos

After its run as a Royal Castle, the space was Sun of a Pizza until Hurricane Andrew shut it down. Then it was Roberto’s Taco Shop, a California chain with South Florida locations in Cutler Bay (known as Cutler Ridge at the time), Delray Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Hialeah, and Kendall.

Roberto's Tacos - The Miami Herald September 25th, 2003
Roberto’s Tacos – The Miami Herald September 25th, 2003

His cousin Ernesto took over the space…just kidding; I have no idea if Roberto and Ernesto were related.

Horchata from Ernesto's Taco Shop in Cutler Bay, Florida
Horchata

Once inside, I made my way to the Horchata machine. I’m not the biggest Horchata fan, but a few sips here and there is always an excellent palate cleanser.

Those sips usually come from Marcela‘s Horchata, and since she wasn’t here, it meant I was going rice milk-less for the afternoon.

Tortilla Chips from Ernesto's Taco Shop in Cutler Bay, Florida
Tortilla Chips
Salsas from Ernesto's Taco Shop in Cutler Bay, Florida
Salsas

The tortilla chips did not appear to be of the freshly fried and made in-house kind, but they did their pre-lunch snacking job. So I served myself a trio of their salsas in those little paper sauce cups, which I shall forever associate with Wendy’s.

Taquitos from Ernesto's Taco Shop in Cutler Bay, Florida
Taquitos
Carnitas Taco from Ernesto's Taco Shop in Cutler Bay, Florida
Carnitas Taco

She came here for the carnitas tacos, and I felt like a taquito today. Her carnitas looked and smelled good from where I was sitting. The beef taquitos were on point, topped with melted finely shredded cheese & a side of sour cream, not crema this time.

If I lived in the neighborhood, I could see myself stopping at Ernesto’s Taco Shop for a taco fix and maybe a Horchata sip.

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