If you’re looking for a quick bite at an honest price, there’s a delightful new addition to State Street’s restaurant scene: Tangonadas, the zestily decorated and soundtracked little place that opened one month ago right next to Hawaiian-themed boutique Malulani. Opened by Buenos Aires–born Jesica Manuzza Max, who also owns Malulani, the new place serves up the buttery stuffed pillows of Argentinian pastry along with European and South American desserts.
The empanadas come in chicken, beef, spinach, and seasonal options, with the chance to upgrade to a gourmet option that includes extra fillings. Of these, the chicken was my favorite, but all are great, and especially tasty with the homemade chimichurri sauce. At $2.99, the standard empanada is as affordable a snack as you’ll find along State Street, and one of the best.
Tangonadas is a family-run business, and Max and her parents have made a tango-tuned space that’s a labor of love and an homage to her Italian-Argentinian heritage, with handmade artisan signage from her mother and a chandelier Max designed herself. The many colors reflect the history of impoverished Italian immigrants who built shelters of the ships they traveled on, Max said, and she hopes to continue that lineage of positive resilience here. Visit the new Tangonadas to taste and feel the love.
1014 State Street, Suite B, (805) 770-5497, tangonadas.net.