Image: Juiced and Sauced.
Last Updated: June 2022
Current Status: Sit-down dining and to-go/delivery available. Open for lunch and dinner during the week. Open at 9:00 a.m. on weekends.
Nominees for the most surprising and welcome developments in D.C. dining is the boon in tacos in the last decade or so. We have gone from the sparseness of the Sonoran desert to a Yucatán rainforest-like bounty. Los Gemelas is a product and a beneficiary of that development. They serve tasty, juicy, crowd-pleasing tacos in the La Cosecha market building of Union Market.
Las Gemelas is one of two spots in building from the team behind Espita Mezcaleria. The sit-down restaurant serving entrees is Destino at the other end of the hall. Las Gemelas is at the south end with sunny seating inside and out with the now apparently mandated neon script across the wall. When opening the spot, they were careful to make the stars of the coverage the artisans working in the shop, and rightly so. Yesenia Neri Diaz came from Espita. She is in charge of the masa production that creates the blue corn tortillas used for the tacos. The meat comes from the hand of butcher Rogelio Garcia. His Al Pastor is a must-have here. As Tim Carman wrote in the Post, the tacos come pre-sauced with no salsa bar in sight to dress as you see fit. While appreciative of the chef’s confidence it limits customization – something many taco eaters are used to. It also leads to the tacos being pretty juicy. We recommend eating carefully and quickly before the single tortilla wrapping starts to crumble.
Options other than tacos include two kinds of tortas (Chicken Milanese, Al Pastor), assorted quesadillas and sides. Soft serve ice cream and churros (two different items) are the dessert options. The drink menu is limited with a few beers and sparkling beverages. For the harder stuff you can wander over to the bars in the main hall.
Other Guidance: The spot is casual. In lieu of tipping, they add a 15% service charge. The restaurant is located on the first floor with no steps to get in. GF does well with the corn tortilla, but the only two vegetable-based dishes are the mushroom versions of tacos or quesadilla.
Washington Post: Tim approves overall, but has some qualms about saucing and plating. He calls out the barbacoa and al pastor for being particularly good. In 2022, he put the chorizo verde on his best taco list.
Washingtonian: Preview from when the restaurant and taqueria both shared the same name.
Tyler: Fell hard. Also a fan of the chorizo.