Best Of 2002

Best Tango for Your Taste Buds: El Tango Taqueria

The five-table dining room at this casual Lakewood eatery may be tiny, but chef-owner Antonio Carafelli's flavor quotients are enormous. The peripatetic Italian native, who also happens to be an accomplished painter and musician, turns out delicious and unusual Santa Fe- and Latino-inspired cuisine that will have your senses dancing in delight -- homemade goodies like smoked cinnamon-chipotle salsa, juicy Jamaican beans, and plump enchiladas rojas, smothered in zesty casabel sauce. Carafelli calls his fare "culinary artistry"; we just call it damn fine food.