The dish on Long Island's restaurant and food scene.
Magic Taco Corp. is up and running in Islip Terrace. The place is co-owned by two chefs, Steven Scalesse, recently profiled in Newsday’s All-Star chef series as chef-owner of Tullulah’s in Bay Shore, and Devin Delgado, who cooked at Tullulah’s with Scalesse for years.
“I grew up in Islip Terrace,” said Scalesse, going on to describe a little coffee shop next to an Italian ice place that he and his wife, Nicole, had their eyes on for a while. “We always said that if that goes out of business, we’re going to turn it into a taco stand.” And that’s what happened.
From the way the menu reads, the name of the place might prove an apt one. Soft white corn tacos ($4) come two to an order, topped with Napa cabbage, pico de gallo, pickled red onion and jalapeño, Mexican cheese and crema. You may add, for an additional cost, such proteins as smoked Berkshire pork belly ($3.50), slow- roasted porchetta ($3.50), ancho-soy braised beef ($3), grilled jerk chicken ($3), house-made kimchee ($2.50) and scrambled egg ($1.50), to name only some of the choices.
Any of these items may be added to Chinese steamed buns ($5.50 for three), pupusas, or griddled corn and cheese masa tortillas ($5) and quesadillas ($5). Also on the menu: a pork and peanut salad ($11), black bean soup with diced fried pork crackling ($5) and a vegan kale salad ($10).
Scalesse said he will be going back and forth between this place and his Bay Shore restaurant, while his partner, Delgado, will be on-site.
Right now, there’s counter service, with seating at three tables inside and six outdoor picnic tables (soon to be equipped with umbrellas) on the side of the building. The place is open daily from 11 a.m. till about 10 p.m.
Magic Taco Corp. is at 3321 Sunrise Hwy., Islip Terrace, 631- 277-8226.