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Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month with authentic Mexican tacos in Tampa

Rigoberto Abundis, owner of Tacos el Flako.
Posted at 5:35 AM, Oct 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-11 17:58:01-04

TAMPA, Fla. — Authentic Mexican street tacos can be hard to find. But, if you take a little time to look in the right place, they are likely right under your nose.

Parked on the corner of West Hillsborough and North Habana Avenue is Tacos el Flako. The food truck is owned and operated by Rigoberto Abundis. Abundis is from the state of Guerrero in Mexico, where he honed his taco skills cooking for his family.

"I have 10 siblings," Abundis told ABC Action News reporter Michael Paluska. "I had to cook a lot."

Abundis said his mom taught him to cook at a young age. So when he moved to the United States, he wanted a piece of the American Dream for himself and launched Tacos el Flako.

"I feel really proud of my family, of my parents for supporting me," Abundis said. "I am proud to be a Hispanic and a Mexican-American."

The taco truck serves up 15 different tacos, including "taco de lengua" which is made of cow tongue.

"We have more Americans eating here than anyone else," Abundis said. "They love Mexican food, so we try to support that they continue to love our food and come back."

The father of four named the business after his oldest son and his love for tacos. Abundis said the meat you put inside doesn't matter. A traditional authentic street taco must be served with fresh cilantro and onion, cooked onions, and grilled jalapeño peppers.

The truck serves up more than tacos; Abundis also makes homemade tamales, tortas, and posole.

There are two Tampa locations. The truck is located at 2908 W Hillsborough Avenue. A second location is inside a small market at 2412 N Armenia Avenue. Abundis said he's seen his business grow a lot in the six years since he launched.

"Where do you want your future to take you?" Paluska asked.

"Tacos el Flako, expands across the USA, everywhere," Abundis responded with a smile.