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Food Crush at Tacos El Fluffy

“As much as the all food was good, the only thing better was Geo as a person. To meet this guy is to love him and one of the kindest, most authentic guys I’ve ever met,” said Doug Jolly, Local Pulse Partner and Food Crusher.

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Last week the Local Pulse food crush team along with guest eater, Kim Wolford, Co-Owner of WolfGang LLC took their appetites to Tacos El Fluffy at 707 North Pace Blvd and were greeted by the owner, 26-year-old Jodanny “Geo” Zlaya. When you walk through the doors of the former Taste of Jerusalem, the first thing you notice is a giant mosaic spanning the counter that reads ’Tacos El Fluffy.’ The giant mosaic took him and his family over 800 hours and 500 vintage plates to complete. It’s very clear the mosaic is a labor of love which is exactly what their food encompasses.

Geo grinned from ear to ear as he told us about the business he opened almost a year ago with his family’s recipes at the heart of it. His family’s roots come from Honduras and The Dominican Republic, but Geo was raised in Texas where his mother and aunts developed their cooking styles. Geo landed in Pensacola when he joined the Navy and after serving was joined by his family just weeks after mentioning his dream of opening a restaurant. When you walk into the kitchen you can feel the family connection, love and bond that is their secret recipe of success.

As we sat down we could hear the clapping of tortillas from the dining room which speaks to freshness of every ingredient and dish that comes out of their kitchen. Everything down to the tortilla, refried beans and sauces are made in-house. We were delighted to witness the giant steamer filled with his mother’s famous tamales that are made fresh every morning.

”By the end of the day, we often are sold out of the tamales,” said Geo. “But I would rather run out knowing I served the freshest tamales than serve something that’s not fresh or authentic. Every dish is made with intention.”

In true family style tradition, we let Geo order for the table and in true Zlaya family tradition, he brought us one of everything on the menu to try. We did not leave hungry and it was worth every single mouth watering bite.

We started with some traditional breakfast plates. Chorizo breakfast tacos, pork belly breakfast tacos and chilaquiles, a traditional Mexican breakfast dish. The freshness of the tortillas is the first sensation you will notice followed by the perfectly seasoned proteins. Geo closes once a week, every Monday, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t working. Him and his family are at the restaurant slicing and processing all the meats which include: Lengua, Barbacoa, Carne Asada, Chicken and they even have a Vegan option that is sought out by vegetarians and taco lovers alike.

The next order of business was a gorgeous spread of tacos and quesadillas stuffed with each of the protein options. With a fresh squeeze of a lime, house pickled red onions and one of his six homemade salsa blends, we were in taco heaven. If you have a taste for spice, you’ll enjoy their chocolate ghost pepper sauce which is served only to those who special request it. Too hot for you? Wash it down with one of their homemade juices including cantaloupe and pineapple tamarind. The juices alone will have you stopping in for a mid day refreshment or snack.

Our belt loops were becoming tighter and tighter, but that didn’t stop us from trying the homemade flan. As someone who loves and craves an authentic flan dish, I can confidentially say it is the best I have ever had. You’ll be asking for second piece before you can finish the first one.

Watch the video above to get the team’s favorites and go ahead and add Tacos El Fluffy to top of your Pensacola Eats list, you won’t be disappointed. Lastly, we just want to say thank you to Geo and the team for having us and serving us some of their family favorites. It’s an honor to support small business and entrepreneurs in our community and becomes even more meaningful when the feeling is mutual.

”Words can’t even begin to describe how grateful I am to be a part of this community,” said Geo as he expressed his gratitude for his supporters, mentors and customers.

Hours include:

  • Tues-Saturday 8:30am-9pm
  • Sunday 9am-6pm
  • Closed Monday