NME After Print: El Cotorro closes to evolve
El Cotorro, Nob Hill's taco and gelato shop, has closed as of April 10th. Located at 111 Carlisle NE, El Cotorro opened in 2016, providing Albuquerque with some of the tastiest tacos in town. The restaurant focused on Mexico City and Yucatán cuisine, featuring braised oxtail and house-smoked lamb barbacoa tacos made with homemade corn tortillas and fresh salsa. Accompanied by its varieties of gelatos, El Cotorro witnessed years of success.
Owner Daniel Boardman, who owns Tia B's La Waffleria and Tia Betty Blue's, is proud of what El Cotorro brought to the City. "We opened El Cotorro in 2016 with the concept of tacos, mostly of the style of those found in Mexico City and the Yucatan, prepared using the care and food quality more typically associated with a fine dining restaurant. We made our own corn tortillas and salsa daily. We smoked our leg of lamb barbacoa. For oxtail tacos, we braised the oxtails for a full eight hours. We also used a rotating variety of premium fresh fish and shrimp for seafood tacos. Our approach served us well for many years and let us offer a quality of taco that unsurpassed in Albuquerque."
But with inflation causing rising food and labor costs, Boardman had to make some challenging decisions. "In the last two years, labor costs increased 40%, and food costs for some items increased over 50%. Ultimately the amount we would have had to charge for a taco was more than what the Albuquerque market could accept. Even when we spent $8 on the labor and ingredients in a taco, we found that if we charged $6 for it, the market perceived that as high because "it's just a taco."
Boardman shared that he still retains the venue and will remodel and plan to open a new exciting concept there in the next few months.