Some of my friends and I got together with Nelson from Show Me Your Taco from Austin TX and we hit the street to find who had the best taco's in Des Moines. Here is what we found out. Tasty Tacos was a favorite but got beat out by the authentic tacos joints like Taco Loco and Taco Mariana. My feeling is that you love authentic tacos or just hate them. I liked the authentic tacos but wish they had some cheese. Taco Loco serves a quesadilla that is very similar to the authentic taco but with gooey cheese in the middle- a Nelson favorite. The authentic tacos are served with a soft corn tortilla, choice of meat, onions, and cilantro. At $1.25-$1.50 each you can get 3-5 of them for a great meal.
Here is how I rated my visits.
1. Tasty Tacos - Original Taco - Local long-time favorite
2. Taco Loco - Asada (Steak) Taco - A favorite of the DSM PD
3. Taco Mariana - Al Pastor (Pork) Taco - Great Atmosphere!
I am sure there are plenty of places to get a taco in Des Moines from Authentic to Americanized Tex Mex. Go where you like- but don't be afraid to try something new. There is lots of hispanic influences in Des Moines and you should give it a try.