Following a morning of paddling up the Wailua River, Monico’s Taqueria was a spontaneous choice for lunch. Tucked away in the Kinipopo Shopping Center in Kapa‘a it’s an easy place to miss. I recommend you don’t. For weeks following our simple meal, I was tempted to hop back on a plane just to taste the fish tacos one more time. Since my budget isn’t set up for such frivolity, I settled for telling people about it. You’re planning a trip to Kauai? Oh, you MUST get to Monico’s for fish tacos!
Mind you, I’d never been a fish taco person. Fish? Yes. Tacos? Yes. But together? Not so much. Monico’s fish tacos, made with the day’s fresh catch and topped with a creamy jalapeno sauce, have changed the way I read a menu. Whereas in the past I would dismiss the fish tacos without a second glance, now I ponder the possibilities. Could these fish tacos be as good as those from Monico’s? Is that possible? And more importantly, dare I risk being disappointed if they’re not? While I’ve found some decent fish tacos in my quest, I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I’ll simply have to get to Kauai again soon.
If you go: The restaurant is itty bitty, with just a few tables inside (where drinks are served) and casual patio dining under shade trees. No alcohol is served outside. Monico’s is closed for a couple of hours in the afternoon, from 3-5 pm. Located on Kuhio Highway (Kauai).