[Photograph: Nick Kindelsperger]

Part of the curse of my job is that I rarely get the chance to return to places I love, because I'm always off to try something new. So even though my post about La Lagartija in 2011 mentioned that it was probably the one taqueria I've "visited more than any other in the past year," I haven't actually been back since then. I know. I'm upset, too. Fortunately, my return reaffirmed my belief that it's one of the best all-around taquerias in Chicago.

While I'm fond of most of the taco options, the one that is always impressive is the shrimp taco ($3.50). Plump little shrimp are dunked in a beer batter, fried until delicately crisp, tossed on a soft housemade corn tortilla, and topped with crunchy shredded cabbage. Unlike the other tacos, this one comes with two unique salsas: a creamy caper aioli, and a sweet and spicy habanero ketchup. That's a lot of different components for one taco, but they all combine to make one unbelievable bite.

La Lagartija Taqueria

132 S Ashland Ave, Chicago, IL 60607 (map)

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