The Puffy Taco of San Antonio: Keeping it Real… and Tasty

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Tony Maples Photography


Episode four of a YouTube series of shorts called “Tacos of Texas,” featured on the Indie Lens Storycast channel, focuses on none other than puffy tacos found in San Antonio! Visiting what’s known as the original puffy taco place in the Hill Country, the video hosts make their way to Ray’s Drive-In.

Featuring an interview with Gloria V. Lopez, the owner of Ray’s Drive-In, hosts Mando Rayo and Jarod Neece bring viewers the puffy taco experience in video format. But you’ll truly want to taste one yourself to get the gist. Ray’s Drive-In has some long-time employees who ensure the continuity of the process and flavor that keeps bringing the customers back for more.

Keeping the puffy taco tradition alive at Ray’s also means focusing on community and family. Ray’s is an institution in San Antonio’s west side, much like the Mi Tierra Café, located in the city’s historic Market Square. What started out as an offering of great food, which is culturally based but community-oriented, has grown for both entities into an iconic landmark of sorts. They feed a mass of regulars and entice an out-of-town crowd to enjoy what’s become known as a food experience. Rayo and Neece learn more about the corn tortilla at Mi Tierra Café, and from there, it’s on to Henry’s Puffy Tacos. Learning more there from general manager Rick Lopez, the video goes on to identify the difference between what Lopez calls a crispy taco versus a puffy taco. Feeding several generations of Texas Hill Country families with what has long seemed a dietary staple, these restaurants take great pride in being historic parts of their community and in keeping it real.