Mission Taco Joint to open restaurant, arcade in Kirkwood early next year

Mission Taco Joint co-owners Adam and Jason Tilford are preparing a new chapter for the West Coast-inspired taco chain. In early 2020, they’ll be opening a 12,000-square foot restaurant and arcade at 105 E. Jefferson Ave. in Kirkwood, the space previously occupied by Kirkwood Station Brewing

The new Mission Taco Joint, designed by Space Architecture + Design, will be divided into two sides: one will have a 132-seat dining room and a 60-person event space, while the other side will feature a visible in-house tortilla production line, a test kitchen and a smaller bar. In the dining room, customers can enjoy Mission Taco’s normal menu, which offers tacos, burritos, tortas and sides. 

The Mission Test Kitchen is another new endeavor for the chain. There, chef Jason Tilford will focus on “masa-centric items such as empanadas, tamales, sopes, Mexico City-style quesadillas” and more. Tilford aims to have about eight rotating items on the menu at any given time, and looks forward to the culinary freedom that the kitchen offers. “It’ll be like a playground for me,” he said. 

The arcade – also a first for Mission Taco – will include vintage arcade games, pinball and skee-ball. A big fan of arcade spaces like Parlor and Up-Down, Adam Tilford said he wanted to bring that kind of experience to a more family-centric neighborhood. “I can’t take my kids there,” he said about the other spaces (Parlor allows children until 8 p.m., while Up-Down is 21 and up).