Cheap & Good

Tacos bursting with flavours at BrickworksTacos

The fish tacos are filled with juicy tilapia chunks topped with pickled onions and slaw.
The fish tacos are filled with juicy tilapia chunks topped with pickled onions and slaw.ST PHOTO: LEE MIN KOK

One can hardly miss the bold red banner with the word "Tacos" printed in white, announcing the presence of Brickworks Tacos in an otherwise ordinary Bukit Merah coffeeshop.

Located just next to the ABC Brickworks Market & Food Centre and a stone's throw from Ikea's Alexandra Road outpost, it is not exactly the most accessible place to get to.

But boy, was the trip worth it when I finally found the time to check it out last week.

Arizona chef Kameron Kurtz, 36, who moved to Singapore several years ago after he was headhunted to help open a bar in Clarke Quay, set up shop about a month ago with a silent partner, polytechnic lecturer Pauline Ooi, 39.

"Tasty, easy to execute and I wanted to highlight the food from my homeland," he says of his philosophy as he juggles taking orders, cooking, packing food and serving customers during a busy dinner service.


    Where: Stall 3, 2 Jalan Bukit Merah, 01-5134

    Open: 11am to 3pm, 6 to 9pm (Monday to Saturday)

    Rating: 4/5

The food is cheap too. I try all four types of American-style tacos on offer: veggie ($2.50), fish ($3), chicken ($2.50) and beef ($3), and they are all half moon-shaped parcels of goodness packed with explosive flavour.

My favourite is the fish taco: Two soft corn tortillas wrapped around a punchy filling of flaky and juicy tilapia chunks marinated with coriander, lime zest, cumin, tequila and garlic, and topped with sweet and tangy pickled onions and slaw.

I lay on liberal amounts of the Sriracha sauce provided and the combo is a party in the mouth.

Coming in a close second is the spicy chicken taco. Tender shreds of chicken thigh meat, braised for 12 hours in a variety of spices, are dressed with a smoky chipotle sauce when served.

They make for the perfect - albeit a little messy - snack or you can upgrade to a full meal for double the price, which comes with two tacos and a bonus portion of rice with refried bean sauce.

Another winner is the street corn ($2 for half a cob), grilled slightly to impart a smoky flavour before being coated in a piquant mix of crema (the Mexican equivalent of sour cream), chilli, lime, salt and coriander.

It is so appetising that I am willing to forget my pet peeve of getting bits of corn stuck in between my teeth while eating it on the cob.

Now, if only Kurtz would open a stall near my office.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on November 29, 2015, with the headline 'Wrapped with goodness'. Print Edition | Subscribe