The annual opening of Rockaway Taco on Beach 96th Street has attained a sort of ritualistic importance, marking the unofficial start of summertime, if summertime includes interminable rides on the A train. What Chuck the Groundhog is to the coming of spring, Rockaway Taco is to summer’s arrival. And so few announcements have occasioned more disbelief in the Brooklyn Magazine offices than this morning’s report from The Rockaway Times that Rockaway Taco will not be returning to Rockaway Beach this summer. Naturally, the news falls on a day besmirched by dismal, late-winter weather.
Lest you think we’re doomed to skip summer altogether, there is some good news: Andrew Field, the co-founder of Rockaway Taco, will be opening a new taco venture at the Rockaway Beach Surf Club on Beach 87th Street. It will be called Tacoway Beach.
Field told the The Rockaway Times that he began scouting for new locations after Rockaway Taco closed for the season, in October, and that discussions Brandon d’Leo of the Surf Club commenced shortly thereafter. Tacoway Beach will open May 1st, and will be able to offer some features Rockaway Taco never could, like alcohol and plentiful seating. It seems the change is coming because Rockaway Taco’s other co-owner, David Selig, is building a “mobile shack” that will gallivant around the country, issuing forth tacos.
Though the 96th Street space will remain closed this summer, it will reopen in 2016 in some form—perhaps, even, as Rockaway Taco. Stay tuned.