We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Real Mexican Food on an Island...Go Figure!!”
Review of Tee-Jay's Tacos - CLOSED

Tee-Jay's Tacos
Price range: $3 - $13
Cuisines: Southwestern, Mexican, Fusion
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Takeout
Description: Tee Jay's Tacos is a local eatery on Madrona Point, Orcas Island, Washington. TJ's operates out of the Odd Fellows kitchen on Thursday, Friday and Saturday from noon until 6:30 pm from October until May and Thursday and Friday from May until September. We are at the Orcas Island Farmer's Market on Saturday's during these months. The Odd Fellows kitchen is an open kitchen, so our atmosphere is very casual. In good weather we offer outside dining on Fishing Bay with a great view. TJ's has a simple menu built around Tacos, Burritos,Enchiladas and Quesadillas. Our offerings include: beef, poultry, pork, fish and vegetables. The menu is the same from open until close and we have chips & salsa and rice & beans daily. Our appetizers, salads, soups and desserts are seasonal and vary, as well as our weekly specials which have an Asian, near eastern or Indian flair. Be on the lookout for our street sign which says TACOS in big letters.
Reviewed March 22, 2013

We had lunch there today. The previous reviewers hit the nail on the head...no atmosphere if you just count furniture and decorations, but that is quickly made up for in personality and a great dining experience. The food rocks, plain and simple. There are no sombreros or cactus murals, but if you close your eyes and bite into the delicious tacos, the salsas, the enchiladas, you are immediately transcended to just south of the border. I went for the food and met two great cooks, some locals willing to share a story or two, and a fantastic water view! Heck, we are going back tomorrow to try a few more items on their menu. These guys (uncle and nephew) cook from their hearts and do what they know. Can't beat that combination.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Ali-Jw2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (45)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language

17 - 21 of 45 reviews

Reviewed January 10, 2013

Haven't had Mexican food this good since I traveled across the southern border! These guys know what they're doing, and they're a hoot! They'll give ya the scoop on the island, with a ense of humor. Don't let the location deter you, what they lack in funding the location, they make up for with superior quality food. Heck, get it to go and have a picnic on the waterfront if the locale bothers ya.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Rosebl90
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 15, 2012 via mobile

As a local eater here I thought over the months there that I'd tried everything there but they changed it up and raised their standard, again

The Carne is now slow smoked over a NW alder fire like you'd do the NW version of BBQ salmon. No way you could beat the taste.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank OrcasIsEater
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
208TimB208, Owner at Tee-Jay's Tacos, responded to this reviewResponded September 30, 2013

More recently we have switched from alder smoked carne asada to alder fired, then braised brisket.
The unusual quality of the brisket cut needs extra TLC, and we do this by first cooking it over an open alder fire, then finishing it in an oven, low and slow. We don't offer it every week, but when we do, it's worth trying. Thanks Stan.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 25, 2012

Please, please, please, do not let the location, dining room, or kitchen scare you. When we first entered the basement, yes it is in a basement, we almost turned around to leave. The dining room is crude and sparse, and the kitchen is open to the room. This is not a place you go for a view or beautifully decorated dining room. Plain and simple, this is a place you go for incredible food. We stayed in Eastsound for a week, and all we got was over priced and bland food. Day after day, we ate at some of the best restaurants on the island, and day after day, we were disappointed. However, our disappointment stopped here. No, I did not love the atmosphere or decor, but it was the food I wanted. We ordered an enchilada, taco, burrito, and quesadilla. Everything was freshly prepared, incredibly seasoned, fresh, warm, and perfectly cooked. I cannot even describe the quesadilla. It was, by far, the best quesadilla I have ever had in my life. Please be sure to order, at least one, quesadilla. The taco, enchilada, and burrito were all incredible. When we were finished, I so wanted to order a quesadilla "To-Go," but I figured we will just go again tomorrow night! If you prefer a refined dining experience, and atmosphere and views are important to you, at least get your food "To-Go." However, the entire evening was an experience that I am glad I had. We plan to return tomorrow. The food on this island has been less than stellar, and I am glad we found Tee-Jays! I have a feeling that if I come back to Orcas Island in a few years, these guys will have an incredibly successful restaurant, located in a beautiful building. Nobody deserves it more. However, I am from Northeast PA, and I do not think I will ever be back.

    • Food
4  Thank Clay C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 6, 2012

So glad o have read the reviews of this place! We were a bit confused when we made our way to the basement of the Odd Fellows' building on Wednesday, only to find Thai food on the board. We said we were looking for Tee-Jays - "Not until tomorrow!" We were so set on Mexican food at that point that we turned around and walked out. We made it back Friday and it was every bit as delicious as we'd hoped. The pork tacos are unreal - juicy with a bit of sweetness.
The owners/chefs are two guys in their early/mid-twenties who groove at island pace as they cook. Drinks (Mexican sodas) are in the cooler under the table. Tapatio is available by the half-gallon. Try the orange sauce - it doesn't have the kick that La Vics (San Jose) has, and has a smoother crema finish but it is particularly tasty on the fish tacos.
Sadly, a second visit to Tee-Jay's was not to be, as the guys were out at the Eastsound farmer's market today, peddling salmon tacos and pulled pork sandwiches. We should have hit it when we could.
This was the best meal out this trip - can't wait to be back.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank MixerGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Tee-Jay's Tacos also viewed

Eastsound, Orcas Island
Eastsound, Orcas Island
 

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing