Condado Serving Up Crave-able Tacos, Tequila & More

 Mount Pleasant Restaurant Chain  Promotes Community & 'Come As You Are' Art Infused Vibe

Jeff Walker,  Food & Beverage Review

While burgers and pizza continue to be the top two handheld fast foods, tacos are quickly moving up the chart. Sadly, most people still think of tacos as a Mexican hard shell snack filled with ground beef and shredded cheese. However, tacos in the 21st century have come a long way baby! They are far from your grandparents generation and come with a variety of veggies, fruits, meats, and seafood. aaaaaaaacondadologo1 1

Thinking along those same lines, Condado Tacos has taken the road less travelled. The decade old (2014) taco chain founded by Chief Innovation Officer Joe Kahn has created a 'come as you are' community active, art infused eatery that not only stands for equality and justice, but serves up some outrageous tacos, tequila, and margaritas. 

Kahn's sole business mantra is 'treat people well and serve up great tacos'. There must be something in their signature salsas, with the recent opening of the Mount Pleasant Towne Center locale in Mount Pleasant SC, Condado Tacos  has surpassed 50 locations, with the company shooting for 100 plus by the end of 2026. Incredible growth in just under 10 years.

Hip, modern, serendipitous, and or avant-garde, Condado Tacos thinks outside the conventional box. Imagine Baja California meets south beach Miami offering up an exhilarating menu, while the motif aka the overall ambiance reflects offbeat yet innovative imagery from local artists, drawing on their love of animation, pop culture, and expressive graffiti. Simply put, whether it's the kitchen or the dining room walls you experience an overwhelming sense of creativity. Putting it another way, 'the overall vibe at Condado is the vibe'. Can you dig it! aaaaaaaacondado3

Let's talk about the food. Forget about the everyday Mexican themed eatery that offers up the same old tired menu and standard queso, salsa, and guacamole dip as well as run of the mill tacos. Condado serve up five signature varieties each of guac and queso, including The Dirty, a queso blend of chicken, black beans, and cilantro, with the Smoked Cheddar a blend of tex-mex ground beef, and pico de gallo.

You can order up their traditional guac (jalapeño, cilantro, lime, & pickled red onions), or go deliciously fruity with their Pineapple (pineapple salsa & chipotle honey) or their Mango Guac, a hearty guac base topped with a blend of mango, jalapeños, red onion, cilantro, habanero mango sauce, and Tajin (chili-lime sauce). Two guacamole sweet sensations with a kick. Served with there fresh made chips, it's an awesome way to tantalize the taste-buds.

Of course you can jump start your meal with a threesome (don't let your mind go there). We're talking your choice of three dips plus homemade chips. It's a nice variety appetizer to share between meals or as a group starter. Ideal with a cold beverage. aaaaaaaacondado6

You know when you go to the national fast food places and you get a taco, you often ask yourself 'where's the beef' or any of the ingredients advertised on the menu board. It's just the opposite at Condado Tacos. Their 17 suggested tacos including three vegan options come overflowing with either chicken, pork, brisket, steak, and ground beef.

The Baja Shrimp taco comes teeming with plump shrimp basking in a medley of rice, jicama slaw (cabbage, carrots, & cilantro in a tangy, sweet & spicy dressing), pico de gallo, and mango basil Baja sauce, all wrapped in a flour tortilla. Zesty is the best way to describe this sumptuous handheld treat.

Want to wrap your teeth and gums around something that is sweet and smoky while providing a spicy kick, than I suggest the Orange Glazed chicken taco. Ancho (aromatic chili pepper) orange roasted chicken surrounded by a mix of  Thai chili red cabbage, green onion, spicy maple orange sauce wrapped in a soft flour shell before being tucked in a Firecracker (hard) shell and draped with smoked cheddar. Presented with a cool orange slice.

Two tacos that might require a cold beverage on standby are the Sweet Heat (braised beef brisket, cilantro, onions, smoked cheddar, pineapple salsa, habanero-mango sauce & a drizzle of chipotle honey), and it's hotter big brother The Heater that starts out with tequila-lime steak blanketed in pickled jalapeños, cilantro, onions, pepper jack cheese, Mexican chimichurri (fiery seasoning), covered in a glazed cilantro-lime aioli (garlicky mayo spread).

Non-meat eaters searching for a bit of fire could opt for The Dragon, a soft & hard shell combo chuck full of guacamole, roasted portobellos, tomatoes, jicama + cabbage slaw, pickled jalapeños, corn salsa, and tomatillo salsa. aaaaaaaacondadotacos

As great as their suggested tacos are, remember Condado is radical, so they will let you craft your own hard or soft shell delicacy following their simple BYO (build your own) three step process. Pick your base, i.e, Shell It is step one, including hard, soft, firecracker (fiery) or Kewl Ranch shells, with three double decker (hard & soft) options with the Sweet Lucy seasoned with queso blanco and quac.

Stuff It is step two, where you load your shell of choice with proteins and toppings. Layer your taco with tequila lime steak, braised beef brisket, tex-mex ground beef or vegan friendly black beans and rice. Further top it with fajita peppers + onions, jicama + cabbage slaw, or Monterey jack cheese. They suggest no more than two or three toppings, but with a dozen choices you can start building you own taco masterpiece.

Don't forget there's still a step three which is Top It. Four salsas including corn and pineapple concoctions, and finally a half dozen sauces running from the cool Avocado Ranch, to the mild Chipotle Crema, all the way to the blazin' hot Dirty Sauce. Something for every palate.

Keeping with the current trend you can get a lot of taco ingredients in bowl form. The Swole Bowl is packed with proteins (chicken, rice & black beans). Condado  offer a host of gluten-free and vegan friendly options. A majority of the menu is made from scratch. No pre-packaged bags or jars of generic salsa. While they don't run a farm or have a garden in the parking lot, they do use fresh meat, shrimp, poultry, veggies and ingredients to build a crave-able taco. Freakin' amazing!

The Condado Bud Box offers up a choice of two suggested tacos, a half-size queso or guac + chips for a cool $14. This will easily fill even the heartiest of appetites. aaaaaaaacondadobudbox

Let's not overlook Condado's sides. If you're looking for a quick and zesty pick me up I strongly recommend their totally unique Mexican Street Corn. While most imagine street corn is a delicious yet messy handheld treat, Condado Tacos offer their fire roasted corn off the cob sautéed in a seasoned blend of garlic, jalapeños, lime, and red onion and topped with aioli, Cotija cheese, Tajín, and chopped cilantro. This savory treat can serve as a side or a dip! Extraordinary! aaaaaaaacondado7

Enough about their mind blowing tacos. As creative as Condado Tacos is with their food they are equally impressive at the bar, where they carry over 80 (that's right), 80 brands of tequila. It's pretty much, you name they probably have it. Stealing a line straight from their website 'Top off your meal with a classic margarita or go a little crazy with one of our special margarita concoctions.' More on the tequila @

Condado Tacos mixologists can mix up a plethora of margaritas using your favorite tequila. They offer signature seasonal concoctions such as the Aperol Marg complete with Reposado tequila, Aperol (Italian bitter), pineapple, mango, citrus, and agave. Prefer a cocktail, maybe take a trip to the islands sipping on a Funky Kingston delightfully assembled with Bacardi Añejo Cuatro Rum, Ilegal Mezcal Joven, Angostura Bitters, and agave. Ooh la-la!.

Beer enthusiasts enjoy nine brews on tap including Modelo, Dos Equis, and Sam Adams, and another eight of the most preferred beers in bottles or cans. Fruit of vine lovers might opt for a glass of house white or red wine. Non alcohol drinkers or the designated drivers can lean towards mocktails, Red Bull, Ginger Beer, High Noon seltzer, iced tea, or your favorite Pepsi products. A cornucopia of beverage choices to go along with an abundance of sensational tacos. Weekday happy hour from 3-6pm. 

As they've recently said in DC, circling back Condado Tacos offer up astonishing signature and customized tacos, tequila, and margaritas. Want another mind blowing fact, currently most of their suggested tacos that come chuck full of ingredients are all under $6. One will fill you, two will thrill you, and three will cost under $20. Sides and dips $4-$9, and bowls around $11. Affordable always leaves a good taste in your mouth. 

As much as good food and drink please the palate, eateries that are community active are even more enticing. Condado Tacos partner with Feeding America and area food banks to help combat hunger, with 90% off funds raised remaining in the local community. Furthermore, their Art of it All program allows local artists to hand paint murals on the interior walls that both reflect the local landscape while saluting the beloved Condado characters like Lucky Cat. Want one more reason to love Condado, they use serving containers and cutlery made from recyclables. aaaaaaaacondadobudsw

It's apparent, after you dine there for the first time you'll no doubt want to sign up for their Let's Be Buds With Benefits awards program. Basically for every dollar you spend you receive points that your can redeem for future purchases. Easy to do, just download the app. Helps with easy ordering and comes with additional perks. Enjoy a free taco after your first visit when you sign up. Totally rad. For deets visit

Quick recap. Great tasting sumptuously filled tacos, extensive list of tequilas, and community activism all wrapped in a bohemian artsy vibe. If you live or work east of the Cooper, or reside on the Isle of Palms than Condado Tacos is under 15 minutes away, tucked nicely in Mount Pleasant Towne Center near Palmetto Grande Movie Theatre and next to Barnes & Noble. Their physical address in 1712 Towne Centre Way.

Here's another option, especially for the summer. Maybe you're coming back from the beach on IOP and you're still in that surf, sand, and sunshine happiness mode, than maybe duck into Towne Center and enjoy a taco at a rare 'come as you are' eatery that celebrates life through great tasting food and drink. However, best to wear shirt and shoes. Explore all they have to offer here