For me, there’s no better place to relax than the Outer Banks in North Carolina. Not only do the barrier islands boast stunning beaches, lighthouses that dot the shores from Corolla to Okracoke, skimmers that fly close to the water, and spectacular sunsets over Currituck Sound, they’re also home to eateries that satisfy many a food craving (and most of mine).
The appeal of eating out in the towns up and down the Outer Banks is that you can go shorts-and-sandals casual to fine dining, on the beach road, in a shopping center, or a freestanding restaurant. We lean toward the casual, and during our recent trip, we got back to a favorite lunch spot: Bad Bean Taqueria (http://badbeanobx.com) in Corolla, on the northern tip of the islands.
This mainstay (with a second OBX location, the Bad Bean Baja Grill and Cantina in Kill Devil Hills), serves up authentic Cali-Mex specialties with bold and bright flavors. The salsas, guacamole, and chips are all house-made, and there are plenty of gluten-free and vegetarian options.
My best bite was the beef brisket taco on a hardshell corn tortilla. The brisket was slow-cooked with ancho chile spice and shredded, accompanied by a choice of lettuce, cheese, salsa, and sour cream. I went with the mild salsa fresca, with a side of tomatillo salsa (mild, with poblano peppers) to drizzle on the tacos and chips. There’s sweet/mildly spicy brisket in every bite, and let me tell you, one taco is not enough. (I confess to having two, and if we had more time, I probably would’ve gotten at least another one and eaten a light dinner. They’re that good.)
If you vacation on the Outer Banks, be sure to stop at either location to taste the brisket tacos and other specialties (mahi-mahi tacos, chicken mole and other burritos, quesadillas).
What was your best bite of the week?