Rito Loco raises the roof, literally, with its grand opening of El Techo (Spanish for the roof) tomorrow night at 5 p.m. at 606 Florida Avenue NW between T St NW and 6 St NW. The popular mexican food truck opened its brick and mortar storefront about two years ago, and has topped off the location with a gorgeous rooftop.
Rito Loco co-owners Louie Hankins and Daniel Diaz designed the rooftop space themselves. They pulled feature pieces (like the white wash door pictured, left of the bar and an old bourbon barrel) and design inspiration from local places like Community ForkLift.
El Techo’s menu is an elevated version of its downstairs counterpart. The simple menu, printed on two small pages and clipped on a mini clipboard features seven ‘rito or taco filling options, a seafood paella and two ceviche options.
The best and worst part about food blogging is all the food. I sampled everything pictured above, but will need to go back so I can enjoy each dish for more than just a bite!
The white fish ceviche is refreshing, and not too citrusy or tangy – which I find to be a problem with many ceviche dishes. The homemade corn chips that are made for the ceviche dishes are perfect for scooping. They won’t break or crumble under fish and ceviche juice and are warm. 10/10 recommend to a friend.
Moving counter-clockwards around the tablescape, the fried avocado tacos surprised me. Normally I avoid fried things because you end up having a bite of batter, then a bite of whatever was meant to be fried, and everything separates. Not at El Techo! The batter on these fried avocado tacos is goldilocks status (just right)
My favorite part about Rito Loco is the grilled tortilla. Weather you order tacos or a burrito, the tortilla is grilled. For me, it sets them apart, and above from every other mexican spot in town. The rib burrito was delicious, but a bit heavy. The meat was tender and seasoned well, there was just a ton of it. Plan to share.
*Special recipe alert* Daniel Diaz’s grandmother taught him how to make the Mojito burrito; a citrus marinated pulled chicken burrito. Add this to your “to try” list.
The cocktail program at El Techo is not your standard Mexican beer, margarita concept. Look out for special garnishes and fancy bartender tools, like the shaved iced machine to make your cocktails extra cold.
Even if you’re not a salt person, you’ll want to be at El Techo. The Hawaiian alae salt helps with the boozy, spicy punch this drink (pictured below) packs! And… it’s garnished with a jalapeno, pineapple straw and cucumber for those who get hungry at happy hour.
El Techo opens tomorrow at 5 p.m. and will be open everyday (except Monday 9/11) beginning at 5 p.m. on weeknights and 11 a.m. on weekends. Look out for a new brunch menu beginning next weekend!