39th street staple Tiki Taco has a cool new menu with Thai-inspired tacos

Photography by Caleb Condit & Rebecca Norden.

The Wade Brothers had a vision for Tiki Taco on West 39th Street.

Brothers Lyndon and Lindsey Wade are local photographers and video artists known worldwide for commercial work on behalf of A-list clients like Nike and Google. They took over this vaguely tropical Mexican restaurant (1710 W. 39th St., KCMO) as a placemaking project that came with the solemn obligation to sate after-bar crowds with cheap tacos.

To handle the culinary side, they tapped former Westport Cafe co-owner Richard Wiles, who supplemented classic ground beef in crunchy shells with fare like these Thai fried chicken tacos.

The chicken is fried in a tempura batter seasoned with a spice blend that includes ancho chili, paprika and cumin and then gets a nice kick from a dousing of Thai chili sauce. It comes in a perfect Yoli tortilla for $4. It’s double the size of most street tacos and available from the to-go window out front so you can grab one on your way to the next spot.

Looking for more great KC tacos? We published a list of the 35 best in the city after eating hundreds to find them.

Social Media

Get The Latest Updates

Subscribe to our newsletters

Kansas City magazine keeps readers updated on the latest news in twice-weekly newsletter. 

On Tuesdays, Dish brings you food news and our critic picks. 

On Thursdays, The Loop offers exclusive news reports and our curated events picks.