FUZZY’S TACO SHOP
Address: 111 South River Road, Suite A, West Lafayette, IN 47906
When I read an article over the summer that said the space where Potbelly’s used to be on River Road was soon to be occupied with a new tenant, I got excited. I’m always really curious to see of any new restaurants that open up in the area, and always eager to try them out. The apartment was low on groceries, so me and my two roommates decided to go give Fuzzy’s a shot. I went in really without any expectations, but I was actually pleasantly surprised at what I found.
The restaurant model has you order at a counter beforehand, and then sit down to wait for your number to be called, very similar to Five Guys. The one thing that struck me when I first looked at the menu was the sheer variety that was offered; I struggled to figure out what to order for a good few minutes. With dishes ranging from burritos to enchiladas to soft/crispy tacos, and meats ranging from chicken to pork to ground beef, there was plenty of combinations that I could make. I stuck with a taco plate, which included two tacos and two of their sides. I went with a ground beef and chicken taco, with Mix-Mex fried rice and Latin fried potatoes on the side.
When I went up to pick up my food from the window, I was amazed just how much was on the plate, especially for the $6.41 that I had paid for the meal. I sat back down and tried the food, and I thought that it was pretty good. The tacos were made using corn tortillas (which I definitely prefer over the flour variety), and the meats were moist and had a really nice blend of spices. Both tacos were finished off with shredded lettuce, pico de gallo, fresh cilantro, and feta cheese, and everything in the tacos really came nicely together for some fresh and satisfying bites. The fried rice was pretty average and slightly on the dry side, but the Latin fried potatoes were really quite something. Take regular fried potatoes, add a little bit more moisture, kick up the heat a little bit, and that’s what you get with those Latin fried potatoes. I am definitely considering getting a double-order of those potatoes next time I’m there.
The atmosphere they are striving for definitely feels like sports lounge-ish; in addition to the food, they offer a variety of beers and margaritas, and their dining area is decked out with several new flat-screen TVs. It could definitely be a place to grab a bite to eat, something to drink, and relax watching some football or basketball. There’s definitely a market for that, especially around a college campus. Like their name says, it’s a taco shop, and it’s definitely worth giving Fuzzy’s a try, especially with their large portions and wide selection.
Here are my rankings for Fuzzy’s Taco Shop:
Food: 4.5 / 5
I was very impressed with how much the portions were, in addition to their attention to all of their ingredients (the cilantro and cotija cheese crumbles were really nice touches to add to the tacos). The number of food combinations are also something to note as well.
Atmosphere: 4 / 5
With the setup of all of the tables, placement of TVs, and brightly-colored decor, Fuzzy’s provides a great atmosphere to relax.
Service: 5 / 5
The employee at the counter was really helpful when we were ordering and answered some questions we had about the food, and when he came around to clean the surrounding tables, he asked us how our food was as well.
Price: 4.5 / 5
What a bargain for those combo plates. I really got a ton of food out of it, and I felt satisfyingly full walking out of the restaurant.
Overall: 18 / 20 (90%)
June 22, 2012 Post Update:
This past week, I found out that the Fuzzy’s location closed down for good (article located here). It is certainly sad to see them go, especially since I thought that the food was pretty good and they also had some great drink specials. I guess summers at Purdue make for some tough times on some of the local businesses. Triple XXX, however, seemed to take things in stride.