For the longest time, I kept hearing about Naugles Tacos from friends, who grew up in Orange County. They waxed nostalgic about a 24-hour drive-thru and their famous cheese burritos. I was starting to think people were just being wistful and that perhaps this was just one of those food memories that would remain just that – a memory. Fast forward to 2015, Naugles returns to the scene. Christian Ziebarth, whom I had known via Twitter as @ocmexfood, won the Naugles trademark and eventually set up to revive the brand, which merged with Del Taco in the late eighties.
At the Naugles Test Kitchen in Fountain Valley, a flyer had these fun facts about the brand:
• Naugles originally opened in 1979 in Riverside, CA.
• The Naugles brand lasted 25 years and at its peak had 275 locations in 10 different states.
• Naugles invented the 24-hour drive-thru concept and helped to popularize breakfast burritos in America.
The Naugles menu includes tacos, burritos, “cups” (which is basically the taco fixin’s in a cup), nachos and burgers! When I was there, I just tried the original taco (so filling!) and the taco salad cup, both of which I enjoyed. Unfortunately, they didn’t have their milkshakes yet and I’m definitely coming back for that and I’ll probably try a Naugles bun taco too!
Naugles Tacos Test Kitchen is at 18471 Mt. Langley
Fountain Valley, CA 92708 and it is open 7 days a week. The Naugles location on the beach in Huntington Beach is closed for the season. For more information, visit nauglestacos.com