First Look: Cuantas Hamburguesas
Celebrated taquero Cuantos Tacos branches into the smash burger space
Beto Robledo, the owner and founder of critically acclaimed Mexican food truck Cuantos Tacos, has put the Austin food scene on notice with the recent opening of his new concept, Cuantas Hamburguesas, in the Arbor Food Park.
A born-and-raised Austinite who attended Lanier High School, Robledo has had the concept brewing for years. "I originally had several food concepts that I was considering. Cuantos Tacos was the last one I thought of, and it was the one I ended up moving forward with." Robledo laughs, saying that one of his goals is to one day have a food truck park that is composed solely of his different concepts.
Robledo, whose Mexico City-inspired tacos have garnered attention from CNN, PBS, and Texas Monthly, cites the Mexican state of Coahuila as the inspiration for his hamburgers. "There was a place that I used to go to [in] Saltillo. It would be dark at night and they'd be open with just a couple light bulbs hanging above a small stall, but I [was] blown away by their food. I said to myself that I'd love to do something like this."
There are four burgers on the menu at Cuantas Hamburguesas. There's the Campechana, comprising a beef smash patty, a longaniza (Mexican chorizo) smash patty, a corn tortilla griddled with fried cheese, onions, cilantro, lime juice, and chimichurri mayo. "As far as I know, nobody has ever done a Campechana burger before," Robledo claims of the truck's bestseller.
Rounding out the menu are the Americana, a classic American-style burger; the fusion Sincronizada, featuring a hot dog, ham, lettuce, cheese, and chimichurri mayo; and the Hawaiiana burger, served with pineapple and bacon.
Robledo's goal with his hamburger spot is to serve affordable but healthy cuisine that is accessible for all Americans. His recent heart surgery made him realize that he needed to not only live a healthier lifestyle but also serve healthier food to his customers. Cuantas Hamburguesas uses no seed oils in its products and the hand-cut papas fritas are fried in beef tallow. "I've tried hard to experiment and see how I can make this as healthy as I can while still being reasonable for a family to go to."
Cuantas Hamburguesas plans to roll out daily specials in October once the trailer is more established. "We will be busy in early October because we're one of the vendors for ACL Festival, but after that we will be ready to hit the ground rolling and do some really cool things," Robledo promises.
Robledo is a product of Austin through and through, and his Le Cordon Bleu training has taught him how to critically examine his own culture as well as cuisines from other cultures, deconstruct them, and then reconstruct them as an authentic representation of his soul for mass consumption. It's no surprise that Cuantos Tacos has become one of the most reputable street taquerias in Central Texas, and if the 5 o'clock on-the-dot opening lines for his hamburguesa stand are any indication, it won't be long before Cuantas Hamburguesas enjoys the same status.
Cuantas Hamburguesas1108 E. 12th
Wed.-Fri., 5-10pm; Sat., noon-8pm