Taquería Pato Azul is a new cocktail bar and authentic Mexican restaurant in La Crosse, Wis. Located in the heart of downtown, Pato Azul is quickly becoming a favorite among locals and visitors alike. The vibrant restaurant is owned by Erik Kleven and Jennifer Lester who also own the award-winning Bleu Duck Kitchen in Rochester, Minn. Our meal at Taquería Pato Azul was complimentary. The opinions expressed are our own.
We’ve been enjoying unique, farm-fresh dishes at Bleu Duck Kitchen for years. So, on a recent trip to nearby La Crosse, a stop at Pato Azul (Spanish for blue duck) was a must. La Crosse is just a little more than an hour’s drive from Rochester, Minn., and about two and a half hours from the Twin Cities.
Craft cocktails at Pato Azul in La Crosse
While the brightly-colored venue and modern tacos may draw you in, once there you’ll find a full bar with unique cocktail offerings. Taquería Pato Azul has a variety of craft cocktails that fit the restaurant’s theme like the Old Fashionista made with tequila instead of bourbon. They also offer Spanish wines and Mexican beers (served with a salt-rimmed glass).
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When you go, be sure to try one of the Crush-A-Slush cocktails. Each day, two frozen drinks are offered – one with Hornitos tequila and one with Kruzan rum.
We love that the flavors change regularly, so you can always try something new. The day we were there, we sampled the Prickly Pear Margarita and the Chocolate Banana Daiquiri. Both were exceptional – made with real ingredients (not a pre-made mix) and blended to perfection.
What are the most popular dishes at Taquería Pato Azul?
Taquería Pato Azul serves up a variety of authentic Mexican dishes, including burritos, quesadillas, and the best street corn in the Midwest. But it’s the tacos that are most popular! They’re made with fresh, high-quality ingredients and come in a variety of fillings, such as carne asada, carnitas, and al pastor.
We tried the duck carnitas, blackened Mahi Mahi, and pork carnitas. We really liked the duck carnitas.
Taquería Pato Azul vegetarian options
The menu at Taqería Pato Azul has something for everyone’s palette, including vegetarians. Meat-free taco options include a chickpea al pastor taco and a Portabella asada taco with mashed potato, fresh tomatillo salsa and cotija. There’s also an Elote Grilled Cheese made with street corn, cheddar, bread, and chipotle creama that sounded absolutely delish.
Chips and street corn is amazing
The chips with street corn was our favorite. It’s a creamy street corn dip topped with crushed Flamin’ Hot Cheetos (there’s always a Pato Azul twist). Served with house-made chips, it’s the perfect snack with a cold Mexican beer or margarita.
For non-taco eaters (whoever you are)
Don’t like tacos? We can’t imagine. But, Pato Azul also has a variety of upscale hotdogs (a favorite at Bleu Duck Kitchen in Rochester) as well as rice and Ramen bowls. They also serve two desserts – a tropical tres leches and a churro bread pudding. You can see the entire menu HERE.
Service at Taquería Pato Azul
All of the food we tried was great, the service is friendly, and the atmosphere inviting. While servers bring the food to your table and are happy to take your order, you can also place orders (and pay) right from your smart phone, which we appreciated.
Just click on the QR code at the table and order away. The food came extremely quickly, even over the lunch hour. The employees were knowledgeable and welcoming.
The vibe at Pato Azul
The decor at Taquería Pato Azul is colorful, vibrant, and instantly puts you in a good mood. Much of the wall art was created by an area artist, including the enormous dyed rope hanging on a wall. The tables were handmade with tile surfaces, making Pato Azul an approachable yet eclectic space.
Outdoor seating at Taquería Pato Azul in La Crosse
The restaurant also has a small patio that is perfect for dining al fresco on a warm day.
Here are some additional details about Taquería Pato Azul:
- Location: 110 S Third St, La Crosse, WI 54601
- Hours: Monday-Saturday 11am-10pm
- Website: www.taqueriapatoazul.com
- Phone: (608) 782-7267
We hope this blog post has helped you learn more about Taquería Pato Azul. If you’re ever in La Crosse, be sure to check it out and let us know what you think. (And don’t forget to order the chips and street corn.) And for more information on planning a great visit to La Crosse, check out THIS BLOG POST by our friends at FromTentToTakeoff.com.
Note: We would like to thank Explore La Crosse for hosting us. All opinions are our own.