Dirt Cheap Eats 2009: Taqueria Distrito Federal

Walking into this Columbia Heights institution is like taking a quickie Mexican vacation, thanks to a shrine to the Virgin of Guadalupe and crowds of Latino families. Your order should include at least one of the tacos ($2.50 each)—we especially like the crumbly, rich chorizo and the barbecue-like pork carnitas.

The barbacoa res beef burrito ($7) is another favorite, the meat simmered with tomatoes and peppers before getting rolled up with beans, rice, crema, cheese, onions, cilantro, and avocado. For a meal on the go, grab a milanesa de pollo torta ($7), a breaded-chicken sandwich served with avocado, beans, mayo, and cheese. Horchata, a cool rice-and-cinnamon-based drink, pairs nicely with the vibrant flavors

Note: The taqueria’s second location in DC’s Petworth lacks the transportive charm and consistent cooking of the original.

Open daily for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Petworth.