Toothless meth heads, government furloughs, foreclosures, indian casinos. Yes, friends, I’m in Sacramento.
That means Taco Tuesday at Del Taco: three tacos for $1.09. And you want to know something else? It’s been that way since the ’90s. I think they might have been a buck back then. Nevertheless, a whole decade has gone by and the price hasn’t gone up more than a dime. Don’t think too hard about how that’s possible, what with those pesky things like inflation and dollar devaluation. I have, and all logical considerations end in frightening soylent green conclusions.
Yet while tacos were definitely on the shopping list I couldn’t pass up a chance to see how well Del Taco’s nachos stacked up against the competition, namely Taco Bell’s Nacho Bel Grande. Yet, in retrospect, and amid considerable gastrointestinal distress as I write this, I should have limited my disappointment to the tacos.
These are really bad nachos, let’s just get that out of the way. In fact, they’re even worse than the Oakland Raiders nachos, and the only saving grace is Del Taco isn’t charging you eight bucks for them. And comparing them to a Nachos Bel Grande is like comparing Blues Brothers 2000 with any other movie ever made.
The Del Taco Macho Nachos experience begins with some of the worst tortilla chips I’ve tasted since the granny goose value-pak days of 3rd Grade. They weren’t stale, not too salty, too thick or too thin. They simply tasted really, really bad. And that’s strange because even the cheapest tortilla chips are generally decent. You almost have to make an effort to locate lousy tortilla chips. It’s like if you wanted to make the worst home videos possible so you searched high and low for a video camera from 1986. Why try so hard to make something so bad?
The cheese sause offering is notable in that it’s virtually tasteless. There is just the barest hint of flavor in it. It’s just there, I guess because we expect it to be, but if it wasn’t I’m not sure I would have noticed. I’ve not had a more disappointing sauce outside of a school cafeteria. In my mind I pictured two Del Taco employees preparing the stuff behind the restaurant using a garbage can and a fire hose.
Each chip I put in my mouth continued to beguile and frustrate me. Had my tongue gone numb somehow? The meat and beans were as flavorless as everything else. If nachos are heroin, Del Taco’s nachos are methadone. They might stop the shaking but there is no pleasure involved.
Unless you’re in a 12-step program to kick your nacho habit (I’ve flunked out of several), there is not one single reason to eat these awful nachos. They’re as low rent as you can get, and their blandness achieves the odd accomplishment of making eating them a laborious and tedious task.