It is the latest food trend to take social media by storm, with scores of TikTokers now documenting its rise in British cities.
The French taco has been a hit on the other side of the Channel for more than two decades, but only now is it launching a challenge to the UK’s array of well-established fast-food options.
Not to be confused with the Mexican delicacy, the French taco is a gooey treat that is sending young influencers wild, rushing to pass on their recommendations from outlets in London and Manchester.
Among those hoping to elbow their way into the crowded takeaway market are brothers Zack and Momo Nasro, who run Moozak’s off the capital’s busy Kensington High Street.
Speaking from behind a counter in Medz Corner, Zack, 27, insists business has been bustling since they set up two months ago.
But what actually is a French taco and why is it proving so popular?
Zack Nasro, 27, of Moozak’s in Medz Corner, Kensington High Street, has big plans to expand his restaurant across the globe
A close up of one of Moozak’s French tacos which is loaded with meat and oozy homemade cheese sauce
‘The best way to explain it is it’s a mixture between a burger and a Shawarma,’ Zack told MailOnline.
One of the most popular items on Moozak’s menu, Zack says, is the lamb special which sees saucy minced halal meat combined with crispy chicken, fries, mozzarella, crispy onions, and an oozy homemade cheese sauce all wrapped and grilled in a tortilla.
Despite its name, the snack is vastly different to the traditional Mexican taco.
In fact, it is in the suburbs of Lyon in the early 2000s, according to some theories, when the French taco was first invented.
Zack got his first taste in Morocco aged 19 and was hooked from the first bite. He decided to make one tweak to the recipe; less sauce as ‘no one wants to eat covered in mess’.
‘That’s the thing that differentiates us from others. The way they do it in France is to overload with cheese and mayonnaise.
‘With us we try to reduce the quantity of cheese and sauces. A person doesn’t want it messy.’
Describing the taste, he says: ‘It’s like an explosion of flavours and at first you go into a bit of shock and then all the flavours all start kicking in one by one and you feel each one.’
Zack wants to open a new outlet every six months and then after he’s conquered London and the UK with his brother by his side he plans to go worldwide.
Moozak’s isn’t the only French taco restaurant with big plans as more and more start to pop up across the capital.
The front counter at Moozak’s showing off some of the dishes on offer. Customers can select their own fillings and sauces, or instead decide to go for one of the special boxes
Zack (left) alongside his brother Momo, 26, behind the counter. They want to open a new restaurant every six months and hope to see their chain pop up across the world
Hop on the Piccadilly Line from Earl’s Court and an hour’s tube ride north sits The Taco House in Green Lane, Harringay.
Around £100,000 was spent by owner Saleem Rantell, 26, on renovating the building to create a Japanese-inspired restaurant where people can climb a ladder and sit above other diners.
It’s one of the main talking points when people visit, alongside the food.
Like Moozak’s, Saleem sees himself sitting alongside the likes of Taco Bell in the crowded fast-food market and has plans to franchise the business.
‘A lot of people in the UK weren’t familiar with it [French tacos] but they find when they try it they become obsessed,’ he says.
‘I think it’s a combination of a few things. First, we import all of our sauces and they haven’t tasted anything like it in the UK before with the combination of our homemade cheese sauce.
‘It’s like everything in one meal… an explosion of flavours in one meal.’
Saleem is the brainchild behind the business he set up two years ago with the help of the financial backing from his silent business partner.
The Taco House in Harringay launched two years ago and owner Saleem Rantell, 26, has eyes on competing with the likes of Taco Bell
All of the Moroccan and Algerian sauces are imported and the combination with the homemade cheese sauce is like nothing anyone has ever experienced before, says Saleem
Saleem spent £100,000 to completely renovate the restaurant into Japanese-inspired seating where diners climb ladders to sit above other people
That includes all the names of the dishes on the menu, from the Paris-inspired Eiffel Taco (cordon bleu, minced beef, turkey rashers, black olives and Moroccan sauce), to the Philly Cheese Taco (diced steak, minced beef, cheddar cheese, caramelised onions, peppers, and Algerian sauce).
‘We’ve had positive feedback and the quantity is quite filling and we often have people take part of it home in a takeaway box,’ he says.
‘The Moroccan and Algerian sauces have unique flavours; not too spicy and not too tangy.’
As for Taco Bell, Saleem has the chain firmly in his sights and believes The Taco House has more than enough to rival the Mexican-American restaurant.
Food lovers have been raving about the French taco on social media with videos popping up on TikTok from Manchester to London of them waxing lyrical after taking their first bite.
One of those was from London Foodee who was left in awe of the ‘mouthwatering feast’ at The Taco House and described it as a ‘must check out destination for food enthusiasts’.
‘These guys have perfected the art of crafting French tacos, a delightful twist on the classic Mexican dish. Imagine a warm, grilled flour tortilla enveloping a combination of French fries, cheese sauce, sauce, and a variety of delectable filling,’ he wrote.
Saleem has seen other restaurants leapfrogging onto the new trend, not that he’s too bothered.
‘More and more places are selling French tacos now,’ he says. ‘I think I’ve seen three or four restaurants incorporate it on the menu because it’s quite simple to make and it’s very filling… if it’s made right.’