‘We lost our beautiful little taqueria’: Taqueria El Barrio has permanently closed

"We tried. I’m sorry," wrote owner Alex Sáenz.

A selection of tacos at Taqueria el Barrio
A selection of tacos at Taqueria el Barrio. –Erin Kuschner

A year-old taqueria on Commonwealth Avenue has permanently shuttered, with one of its owners posting on Twitter that ‘it never got a chance.’

Alex Sáenz (Bisq), who partnered with Servio Garcia (Bisq, Bergamot) and Luis Figueroa to open Taqueria el Barrio, announced on Thursday afternoon that the taqueria had permanently shuttered.

“It’s official,” he wrote. “Permanently closed. We lost our beautiful little taquería. We tried. I’m sorry. I honestly don’t have the right words to say what I need to say. It never got a chance. The taquería team will be @bisqcambridge for the next two weeks. Buenas noches 1022 Comm Ave.”

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A website for the restaurant appears to be shut down.

Taqueria el Barrio opened near the Boston University West Campus in August 2019 with flavors rooted in Sonora, a northwestern region of Mexico. The fast casual eatery served tacos, quesadillas, tortas, churros, and birria, along with fantastic horchata and various agua fresca options. Since first closing its doors at the start of the pandemic, the Taqueria el Barrio team occasionally popped up at Bisq and Time Out Market.

Responses to the news included well wishes from other Boston industry folks.

“So sorry Alex, please hang in there,” wrote Villa Mexico Cafe’s Bessie King.

“Bummer man, tough times,” wrote Michael Serpa, chef and owner at Select Oyster Bar and Grand Tour. “Keep your head up.”

And Keith Kreeger, an Austin-based ceramic artist who makes dinnerware for restaurants across the country, chimed in with his own condolences.

“I am sorry to hear this,” he wrote. “I know my words will ring hollow, but this is in no way your fault. I’m sorry that our society failed to help you here.”

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