At Taco Circus, co-owners Christian Ethridge and Mikey Carrasco intend to bring a taste of Texas to south city St. Louis with a tried-and-true restaurant concept they grew up with: the local fast-food taqueria. The Austin natives will cook up affordable Mexican eats using locally-sourced meats, with tacos and a few other dishes available from a simple a la carte menu.

The childhood friends both come from managing local kitchens – Ethridge from Baileys' Restaurants commissary and Carrasco from 4 Hands Brewery. At Taco Circus, they'll offer from-scratch options seasoned with house blends of dry spices for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The 700-square-foot corner space in the Bevo Mill neighborhood features designs by the artistic duo, including red-and-blue walls accented by framed circus-themed art. The dining area seats 20, with a quick-service counter and an open kitchen to keep things swift.

“We want people to be able to pull over, get something to eat, and go about their day,” says Ethridge. “This is true single-serving food. You can tailor your own meal to be as small or large as you want, and these are going to be some of the lowest prices in town.”

The quantity factor doesn't mean a dip in quality, however; Taco Circus sources locally-raised, hormone-free Berkshire pork from Root + Holler, as well as grass-fed beef from Rain Crow Ranch. Visitors can find these products in everything from Frito Pie to chorizo breakfast tacos, the latter featuring sausage made in-house.

Tacos, priced at $1.99 or less each, are broken down into three build-your-own categories: tortilla, filling and topping. Choose from soft flour, soft corn or crispy shells; ground beef, chicken, charbroiled and slow-cooked pork steak, veggie or beef fajitas filling; and garnishes of cilantro and onion or lettuce and tomato. On the breakfast side, opt for a combination of two of the following on a soft tortilla: potato, egg, breakfast sausage, cheese, chorizo and bacon.

Additional options include a taco salad, funnel cake with cinnamon sugar and lemon glaze for dessert, and a variety of sides including beans, rice, queso, chips, salsa and guacamole. House taco sauces meant to accent each savory meal include a green jalapeno sauce and a red New Mexico-chile sauce. For drinks, select from bottled Mexican sodas and coffee.

Taco Circus opens this Friday, February 27 and will be open seven days a week from 7am to 9pm.

Taco Circus, 4258 Schiller Pl., Bevo Mill, St. Louis, Missouri, 314.808.2050, tacocircus.com


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