I attribute my love for tacos to the year I spent living and working in San Diego. I ate breakfast tacos on the cheap, discovered how glorious loaded fish tacos could be, and learned that authentic corn tortillas tasted drastically different from what I had known in the past.
Even though it’s been about three years since I’ve moved back to Oahu, those Taco Tuesday cravings hit pretty hard sometimes. So I used my cravings as an excuse to scope out the best deals you can score on any given Tuesday.
Here’s the breakdown by size, comparison with regular prices, meat selections and other deets you need to know. I've only included tacos that are four inches or bigger. I'm all about getting the most bang for my buck.
South Shore Grill: $2.75 chicken and fish tacos
3114 Monsarrat Ave., Diamond Head, 734-0229
Regular price: $4.50 each
Meats: Discount only on chicken and fish tacos
Each taco comes filled with housemade slaw, tomatoes and green onions. Tuesdays are the only day you can get fried fish tacos, though — it's usually grilled fish — so definitely take advantage of that.
Scratch Kitchen & Meatery: $26 for three tacos, three alcoholic beverages and three sides
1170 Auahi St., Ala Moana, 589-1669
Regular price: N/A
Meats: Breakfast taco (chorizo and eggs), buttermilk fried oyster, rotating flavor (during my visit, it's pulled pork)
The tacos are made with two gluten-free corn tortillas and sides include chorizo rice, black beans and a small corn on the cob, but the alcohol component makes this a steal. You get a shot of tequila, 6 ounces of Modelo beer and a rotating specialty drink like a margarita. This deal is so filling and so generous with the alcohol that I'm not sure I should be recommending it.
Serg’s Mexican Kitchen: $2 tacos
2740 E. Manoa Rd., Manoa, 988-8118
Regular price: $3.95
Meats: Carne asada, chile verde, chorizo, chicken, pork carnitas, al pastor, grilled fish, breaded fish, veggies
From 4 to 9 p.m., all tacos are $2. Fish tacos are topped with housemade Mexican slaw, while the other meats are topped with onions and cilantro. Sidenote: If you want lengua, cachete or tripas, these tacos are $3 each.
Alejandros Mexican Food: 50 cents off
2831 Kalihi St., Kalihi, 777-0038
Regular price: $2.75 for carnitas or beef, $3.50 for carne asada
Meats: Carnitas, beef and carne asada
All tacos come with onions, cilantro and salsa verde. The carnitas are my go-to since the shredded meat is moist, fresh and generously portioned. Check the chalkboard specials for other discounts (macho burritos are $1 off on Saturdays).
Encore Saloon: $2 tacos
10 N. Hotel St., Downtown, 367-1656
Regular price: $2.50 to $3
Meats: Barbacoa beef (slow-braised beef chuck), carnitas (roasted and fried pork), chile verde chicken (stewed chicken thighs), Baja fish (beer-battered fried fish), and tree hugger (sautéed squash, zucchini and mushrooms with cilantro pesto and crema)
My advice: Go to town on Encore's Baja fish and barbacoa beef, since these are normally $3. Also, on Taco Tuesday, tecate is $2 instead of $4.
BIC Tacos: $2 tacos
841 Bishop St., Downtown, 260-4040
Regular price: 2 for $6 or 3 for $8 (larger tacos)
Meats: Grilled chicken, carne asada, roasted pork, chorizo
Every day is Taco Tuesday at BIC, meaning the small street tacos are always $2 each. They come with onions, cilantro, lettuce, cheese, lime, salsa and sour cream. You could also get two tacos for $5.99 or three for $7.99 — choose between soft corn (4½-5 inches), flour (5½-6 inches) or housemade fried corn (6 inches) tortillas for these larger tacos. For a sweeter deal, you get free ice cream with any $10 purchase on Taco Tuesday. Bonus: BIC serves five-inch breakfast tacos all day, and the pork belly, bacon and egg combo is bomb.com.
Oahu Mexico Grill: $3 tacos
Address: 2520 Kalakaua Ave., Waikiki, 927-3720
Regular price: Taco plates are usually $10 and include two 6-inch tacos and a side of rice and beans
Meats: Only the braised beef (shredded, grass-fed Angus beef in a spicy chili blend) and kalua carnitas (slow-roasted kalua pork) qualify for the discount
OMG's $3 tacos are available from 6 p.m. to closing. These 5-inch tacos are slightly smaller than the ones that come in the taco plates, but they're still a good bargain — especially because each taco is stuffed with fillings.
Mi Almita Cantina: $2 tacos
2311 Kuhio Ave., Waikiki, 377-6915
Regular price: Usually $15-22 for taco plates (three tacos/plate)
Meats: Baja-style crispy fish with chipotle mayo
Every Tuesday from 11 a.m.-10 p.m., feast on tacos at Mi Almita Cantina for a discounted price. During this time, the Cantina's frozen margaritas are also discounted at $2 each. Ole!
Taco Kabana: Buy 3 tacos, get 1 free
1121 Union Mall, Downtown, 585-8186
Regular price: $2.67 each (four tacos usually cost $10.42 with tax)
Meats: Carne asada, grilled chicken, carnitas, grilled fish or beef tongue
Info: Buy three tacos and get one free every Taco Tuesday (that's four for $8, no tax). Four tacos are pretty filling, but if you want a complete plate, the rice and beans combo is a sweet deal, too.
Thyda’s Tacos: $2 or $2.50 tacos
1034 Queen St., Kakaako, 310-666-4671
Regular price: Depending on the meat you get, tacos cost $2.75-$4
Meats: Pollo, carnitas, carne asada, barbacoa, jackfruit and lengua
Pollo and carnitas tacos are $2, while carne asada, barbacoa, jackfruit and lengua tacos cost $2.50. Still, this is an awesome deal each each taco comes with double tortillas.
Burgers & Burritos Hawaii: 3 tacos for $7
760 Kapahulu Ave., Kaimuki, 732-9490
Regular price: $3.50, $5 for seafood or three for $9
Meats: Shredded beef, diced chicken, carnitas-style shredded pork, fish or shrimp (three for $12)
BBH's Taco Tuesday’s from 4 to 8 p.m., and tacos come topped with onions and cilantro. Here’s the best part: You get to deck out your tacos at the salsa bar. There's housemade green salsa, red salsa, pico de gallo, limes, radish, Tapitio hot sauce and housemade habanero hot sauce, so you can easily create the most loaded tacos ever.