Located on 211 Washington St., Garage Taco Bar is a lively spot for locals and Binghamton University students alike. The restaurant consists of vintage diner style tables as well as bar seating. The energetic atmosphere of Garage Taco bar with its rustic brick walls, ambient lighting and eclectic artwork, compliments well with their Mexican-inspired street food dishes.

For this spring’s Restaurant Week, Garage offers a $18 three-course lunch and $25 three-course dinner. Both menus are the same, but for dinner, you are treated to three tacos instead of the two for lunch. While it was not my first time at Garage Taco Bar, it was my photographer Jacob’s first time, and I was excited to hear his thoughts on the restaurant and its food.

The service was quite efficient as after Jacob and I placed our respective orders with our server Selena, our drinks were quickly brought out followed by our appetizers and entrees.

For drinks, I chose the agua fresca which was specifically strawberry- and lime-flavored. Upon the first few sips, I immediately enjoyed the freshness of the strawberries. The sweetness of them combined with the tartness of the lime made for a refreshing drink, especially with the warmth of the food that arrived soon after. Jacob opted for the passion fruit margarita which consists of the restaurant’s fresh sour mix and passion fruit. For the margarita, you also have the option of either a salt or sugar rim and Jacob went for the latter. He found it to be a great take on a classic drink and also paired well with his meal. The restaurant also offers Modelo — their house favorite beer that is served with a lime.

For appetizers, I got the garage fries which were seasoned as well as lightly drizzled in queso. Jacob got the street corn which was served with butter, queso fresco, chili seasoning and came with a side of chips for dipping. The fries were light and airy and the seasoning was not too overpowering. I also found them to be perfectly crispy. Jacob let me try some of his corn, and I noticed that all three elements worked well together, as the butter was a good foundation that helped to elevate the added chili seasoning and queso fresco. If you’re not feeling the fries or corn, Garage also offers a lime citrus salad which includes pico de gallo, queso blanco and house dressing.

Lastly, for entrees I had the OG cauliflower tacos which included fried cauliflower topped with cajun seasoning, pickled onions, chipotle crema, fresh jalapeños and cilantro. While I had been at the restaurant before, I had never ordered their tacos — but now, it is safe to say that they are delicious. The crispiness of the cauliflower coupled with the slight acidity of the pickled onions and sharp bite of the jalapeños was a satisfying flavor combination. The chipotle crema also gave the tacos a nice saucy texture that was not too overwhelming. Jacob got the roasted poblano and onion barbacoa tacos which came with garlic crema and cilantro. He found the meat to be both nicely tender and smokey and described how the onions brought the dish together while the garlic cream elevated the tacos to the next level. You can also go for their avocado crema chicken tacos which includes pickled onions and cilantro.

Overall, Garage Taco Bar continues to be a staple in the Downtown restaurant scene with its vibrant environment combined with their style of serving comforting Mexican eats.