Taco Gato now open to public in downtown Cedar Rapids

Eclectic Mexican establishment is latest venture for Fun Not Fancy restaurant group

Taco Gato Cedar Rapids
A bright exterior welcomes guests to Taco Gato, now open at 209 Third St. SE in Cedar Rapids. CREDIT TACO GATO FACEBOOK PAGE

After a brief soft opening, Taco Gato is now fully open to the public in the heart of downtown Cedar Rapids.

Taco Gato, in the former Lost Cuban building at 209 Third St. SE in Cedar Rapids, is the latest restaurant venture of the Fun Not Fancy restaurant group, which already operates Bricks Bar & Grill at 320 Second Ave. SE, LP Street Food at 302 Third Ave. SW, Cliff’s Dive Bar & Grill at 227 Second St SE, Moco Game Room and Hot Dog Bar at 1600 E Ave. NE, the Sacred Cow Tavern at 1000 Seventh St. SE, and the hip-stir at 1120 Seventh Ave. in Marion.

Taco Gato has been in the works for nearly two years, but experienced some delays during the COVID-19 pandemic. Now the only Mexican restaurant in downtown Cedar Rapids, it features an eclectic menu far beyond basic Mexican fare, with drinks such as “meowgaritas” and “pawlomas” playing off the restaurant’s feline theme.

Among the menu’s features are appetizers such as fried chorizo huarache and shrimp ceviche with sweet potatoes; “ricey” bowls with names such as “poke-ish bowl” and “almost bibimbap”; a “hot brown burger” with poblano gravy; taco “bento boxes”; seasonal cocktails such as “spin me a tale” with aperol and acqufaba and “catnip crazies” with rhum clement, vermouth and coconut cream; and a house ale brewed for the restaurant by Backpocket Brewing of Coralville.

Hours for the new restaurant are Tuesday to Friday, 3 to 11 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. to close; and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. It will be closed on Mondays. Owners say the kitchen will close at 10 p.m. each day, but “the bar may remain open a little later.”

Contact Taco Gato by phone at (319) 200-8659 or by email at [email protected]