The Best Al Pastor Tacos in Playa Del Carmen – El Fogón

(Last Updated On: August 17, 2017)

El Fogón is one of those restaurants that looks pretty unassuming. It has simple tables, an open grill area and it advertises itself as a taqueria (taco shop). And to add to the things that could keep you from steering in – this open grill restaurant is located in hot sunny Playa Del Carmen Mexico. It’s not air conditioned and it is smoky. But if you decided to walk on by and forgo a sampling of their tacos, you’d be making a mistake.

El Fogon Taqueria
The grill at El Fogon Restaurant in Playa Del Carmen

El Fogón isn’t exactly a secret in “Playa”, particularly for the locals. And those out-of-towners who have veered slightly off the beaten track to discover this place and come back time after time.

al pastor
Al Pastor on vertical rotisserie grill

The first thing you notice when wandering by is, beyond the amazing smell of grilling meat, the sight of the Al Pastor vertical rotisserie grill. The gas grill – cousin to the Lebanese shawarma grill, has become a fixture in Mexican cuisine. At El Fogon the skewer is layered with strips of marinated pork and topped with a pineapple that caramelizes and adds extra flavor to the meat as it spins and chars. The resulting meat is joined by onions, cilantro and slices of grilled pineapple in a taco that melts in your mouth. And they won’t burn a hole in your pocket – at about $11 pesos or $0.80 US they are hard to beat.

Slicing Al Pastor Tacos
Slicing grilled chunks of marinated pork for the best Al Pastor tacos in Playa
El Fagon Al Pastor Taco
El Fogon Al Pastor Taco – Best in Playa

Looking for more? El Fogon serves up huge platters of marinated grilled meats paired with grilled onions, potatoes, grilled peppers with cheese and guacamole. They also usually come with a fantastic mildly season bean “soup” peppered with bits of smoky salty chicharon. It was something I didn’t think I’d really want the first time I ordered a platter with a lot of food coming on a hot day – I was wrong.

 El Fogon Bean
El Fogon Bean “Soup”
Arrachera Platter - marinated grill flank steak
Arrachera Platter – marinated grill flank steak

If you are visiting with a crowd you can even have your meats and accompaniments delivered to your table with a mini-grill to cook yourself. And to answer the question that is on your mind right now: yes, they do have a bar.

So don’t be surprised if you find a line of people, waiting in the smoke and heat for a frill-free table, watching the pastor artist slicing and creating each masterpiece taco.  Or that after you do it once, that you’ll be tempted again, and again.

El Fogon Locations
El Fogon Locations in Playa Del Carmen

Planning a trip to Cancun or Playa del Carmen? Don’t miss the Xcaret theme parks! Click for more information including discounts and deals.

Related Stories:

Playa Del Carmen’s Skinny Bikini Potatoes

Mexican Amate Bark Paper – A Debate

Playa Del Carmen Side Trips – Yes You Should

Some of the links on this article are affiliate links, which means that if you click on them and make a purchase, we receive a small referral fee. If you find the links useful and do make a purchase, thanks so much for your support!

16 thoughts on “The Best Al Pastor Tacos in Playa Del Carmen – El Fogón”

  1. Looks delicious! I’m visiting your blog for the first time and I love hearing about couples who have quit and sold everything and started travelling full time. Back to the topic, food: unless you haven’t already, you must come for a genuine pizza in Naples, Italy! I wrote a post about it here –> 🙂

  2. I ABSOLUTELY love Tacos Al Pastor, I was drooling so much looking at those pictures. Had to grab a bag of pretzels to continue reading. I also love Playa Del Carmen. I’m almost positive we ate at El Fogon, but it was awhile ago when we visited. I’ll keep this in my notes.

  3. Oh. My. You just made me crave for this kind of food sooooo bad. Awesome post! Though I don’t know if I like how you’re making me hungry… 😛 haha! Safe travels!

  4. We just got back from our second trip to Playa Del Carmen and El Fogon’s was the first and last place we are. Love, love, love the place. I highly recommend it. There may be a short wait to get in but it will be worth your wait and make sure you try the El Pastor tacos…the best!!!!

    • So glad you got off the beaten track – food is so much better in Playa when you do! We’re headed back soon and I can’t wait for my next Al Pastor taco!


Leave a Comment