Vegan Mexican Restaurant: Flacos in Berkeley | 01/14/11

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Read More: berkeley, Gluten-free diet, Mexican cuisine

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So here's the skinny on Flacos: It's a vegan Mexican restaurant that grew out of its stand at Berkeley farmers' markets. Chef-owner Antonio Magana says he decided to create his own restaurant after getting bored with ordering vegetarian burritos without the cheese and sour cream.

I was hungry on my first visit, so I ordered the full plate platter ($9) - one entree (choice of soy-gluten-free tamale, a banana leaf-steamed tamale or taquitos), salad, rice and beans (refried or black).

Top choices include the soy-gluten-free tamale, which brings corn husk-steamed masa surrounding a filling of roasted poblano chile, refried pinto beans and potatoes. The taquito consists of a vegetarian "chicken" mixture rolled in a corn tortilla and fried. They're doused in Flacos' signature avocado salsa (also sold to-go for $6), which comes in mild or spicy, the latter with roasted habaneros.

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