Whirlybird’s Austin-Style Breakfast Tacos


$3 for this beauty, $4 with chorizo (click on image to savor)

It’s like a little bit of Austin, Texas, detached itself and floated up here. At Whirlybird, the seating area out front consists of two benches and several tree stumps. Inside a laid-back vibe pervades, the counter-guy is eager, and all the cooking is done at the rear of the store in a corner where another guy presides, mainly cooking eggs. There are espresso-making contraptions, too.

Though the interior is outfitted with high trestle tables, the outside is a more fun place to sit. The guy with the dark glasses is from Oklahoma.

Nor are there many choices to make. The chalked menu board lists only two, a $3 breakfast taco and something twice as expensive — but looking much the same — called the Waldorf.

Made with a single soft corn tortilla, the taco is scrambled eggs; cilantro; rubbery white Oaxacan cheese; a homemade sauce that tastes more like Moroccan shakshuka than it does like anything Mexican, but is very good nonetheless (this often happens in Austin, too); and some crumbled jalapeño potato chips. The chips look very good mentioned on the chalkboard, but do little to improve what is already a very memorable breakfast taco.

I’m not sure about the Waldorf. At $6, it includes the chorizo without extra charge and has more of all the other stuff, which kind of overwhelms that single tortilla. It’s also nearly impossible to eat, even with the plastic fork. Transformed into something like enchiladas, it could be great.

The coffee? Don’t ask.

254 South 2nd Street
Williamsburg, Brooklyn

The grand-sounding Waldorf: The ingredients might be put to better uses.

Not only the menu but the interior seems Austinian. The cook is seen in the background.

Where to eat when you’re in Austin, including venerable breakfast taco places like Tamale Shack and Cisco’s.