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Tacos Galore!

Tacos Galore!

By Gini Rainey

Rusty Taco began as a simple family-operated taco stand in the Dallas area and has grown into a leading edge-quick service restaurant concept with locations stretching from Nacogdoches, the DFW area, and Tyler all the way to the Minneapolis-St.Paul Metroplex.

Offering a simple menu of tasty and authentic tacos that are prepared fresh every day, the meal is served quickly in a unique and fun atmosphere that is kid friendly.

When we visited the Tyler location at 1714 S. Beckham the other evening for dinner, what stood out the most to us was the minimalist concept of the restaurant. The night was rather pleasant and the bay door windows were open to allow a nice, fresh breeze into the dining area. Also, there is a covered deck with additional seating to allow for larger groups of people.

Our order was taken by a couple of really friendly guys and as always, I asked what they thought I should try. They pretty much suggested everything on the menu, but knowing that we couldn’t possibly eat that much, we kept it simple.

We got the #1 Picadillo taco, which is a combination of ground meat and potatoes, topped with onions and cilantro on a corn tortilla; the #4 chicken fajita taco, which was grilled chopped chicken topped with cilantro and fresh pico on a corn tortilla; and the #13 Texican taco, spicy Mexican beef, lettuce, tomatoes, and shredded cheese on a flour tortilla.

Our order was ready before we knew it and was every bit as delicious as promised by our servers. I probably could have eaten more, but to be quite honest, I was comfortably full.

Intrigued by the dessert tacos on the menu, we ordered a cherry taco to top off our meal. The deep fried tortilla was stuffed with a few cherries and some heavenly goo, and it was just the right amount of sweet to take the residual fire left in my mouth from the homemade green sauce.

I knew that my daughter and her family (who are die-hard vegans and one who is allergic to gluten) like to eat at one of the Rusty Tacos in the Dallas area, so I asked her about which vegan/gluten free options they order. She said they like the frozen margaritas, the guacamole and salsa – and the opportunity for the kids to run around on the deck.

They like that they use corn tortillas by default, so they are already gluten free. She has had both the rajas tacos and the black bean tacos (without cheese) and thinks that the rajas taco had a bit more flavor. She added that for vegetarians they also have the potato/egg/cheese taco.

All in all, I must say that my opinion of Rusty Taco is good and I am pretty sure that I will be heading back in their direction before too long. Besides, what’s not to like about friendly service, fresh air, great food, and cold beer?

Rusty Taco

1714 S. Beckham Ave, Tyler


7922 S. Broadway, Tyler


Hours: Open 7am-10pm daily


Piada Italian Street Food: A New Concept in South Tyler



Piada Italian Street Food will debut its first East Texas location in Tyler, Texas in early 2017.

The 2,416-square-foot fast casual restaurant, located off Highway 69 S, across from Faulkner Park at 8942 S. Broadway Ave., Ste. #140, will be Piada’s first in East Texas, and the seventh Texas-wide. The Tyler location will seat 60 guests comfortably inside the restaurant and will feature light-filled interiors and modern, European-inspired décor with design elements including warm-stained concrete floors, crisp LED lighting, and handmade white oak furniture, plus Carrara marble, brushed aluminum, painted brick, and subway tile accents. Piada CEO Chris Doody is thrilled to be opening his first restaurant in east Texas. “We’re excited to bring a fresh, modern Italian concept to the fast-growing community of Tyler, a major east Texas hub,” said Doody. “We invite Tyler area residents to sign up for a special VIP sneak peek of the restaurant ahead of its official opening.”

piada-italian-street-food-tyler-txIn addition, the namesake Piada is a thin crust, handmade dough, which is baked on a stone grill, filled with specialty items and then rolled as guests watch the entire process. Guests can enjoy other entrees including pasta bowls and chopped salads. Each is comprised of a grill item, cheese, and vegetables. Diners can choose from three signatures per category, such as the Chef’s Favorite Piada with spicy Diavolo sauce, romaine, sweet and spicy peppers, mozzarella, and shaved and creamy parmesan, basil pesto pasta with parmesan Alfredo, sundried tomatoes, and freshly grated parmesan, as well as the balsamic salad with spinach, shaved napa and red cabbage, feta, bruschetta tomatoes, red onions, spiced pecans, Granny Smith apples, and balsamic dressing – all customizable with an added protein. Grill selections range from all-natural rosemary, garlic, and lemon chicken to spicy Italian sausage with fennel and herbs, and salmon prepared with lemon and olive oil, while toppings span artichokes to black olives.

The made-to-order menu also features seasonal specials. Try the Fall Steak Avocado Piada, which is hand-rolled with grilled steak, arugula, pancetta, avocado, fresh mozzarella, spicy balsamic aioli, pepitas, and roasted butternut squash, or the Harvest Grain and Apple Salad with crispy chicken fritte, mixed field greens, crumbled feta, Granny Smith apples, pepitas, and the Harvest Grain Seasonal Side with dried cranberries, spiced pecans, and roasted butternut squash tossed with lemon basil dressing.

Entrees are complemented by sides including tomato basil and lobster bisque soups, two kinds of hand-rolled breadsticks – Parmigiano-Reggiano and pepperoni served with a creamy parmesan dipping sauce – and decadent Cannoli Chips dessert incorporating crispy, rolled Italian cookies lightly tossed in powdered sugar and accompanied by chocolate chip cream icing. Beverage service showcases Italian sodas and teas alongside Acqua Panna and San Pellegrino waters. A kid’s menu is also available.

Piada Italian Street Food began as an idea scribbled on a napkin during a visit to Rimini, Italy. Their Chefs found “distinct charm in the family operated food carts and corner markets scattered throughout the streets of the city where the aroma of fresh basil, hand-crafted cured meats, and homemade cheeses saturated the air. This trip began their obsession…inspiration…mission to bring this experience back to the United States.”

They opened the first Piada restaurant in 2010 with a mission to create fresh, modern Italian food focused on the preparation of high quality ingredients and attention to simplistic cooking. Today’s consumers are looking for healthier, better quality food with convenient, fast delivery to accommodate their hectic lifestyles. Piada was created with the belief that you don’t have to sacrifice quality and flavor for speed and value.

Service will be provided continuously 10:45am-10pm seven days a week, and catering will also be available. For more info and to sign up for a chance to attend Piada’s Tyler Pre-Opening VIP week, go to You can also like Piada on Facebook @piadaitalianstreetfood, follow on Twitter @mypiada, and Instagram @piadaitalianstreetfood.

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Downtown Tyler

Eat & Drink Local: Who is Open, Their Menus & More

Welcome to‘s new#EatLocalTyler page!

Currently, you can dine-in in limited areas, order take out at the curbside, go through the drive-thru from some local restaurants, and get delivery from a variety of services.

And thanks to Governor Abbott, restaurants can continue to sell alcohol to go!

Links to restaurant’s new condensed menus, websites for ordering, phone numbers, and what is available (delivery, drive-thru, curbside, etc…), and if they have opened their dining rooms are all posted below in a convenient and easy to use format.

Check back often, this list changes hourly!

To add your restaurant or report any changes or additions, email

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Downtown Tyler

Foodie Events: Yum Yum Fun

For more events, check out ‘s entire

Tyler and Northeastern Texas is a food lover’s paradise with an elaborate selection of cuisine types to cooking classes to the wonderful Farmer’s Market. Check out these events going on:

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