Taco

Tacolandia 2015

by Franklin on June 14, 2015


If any city is going to have a taco festival, Los Angeles is going to do it. If any person is going to spearhead this task, it would only be Bill Esparza. This was my first time attending the taco themed food festival, and I was in awe of all the different kinds of tacos everyone presented. The 4,500+ participants got to try food from over 80 vendors.

The Venue:
The event took place at El Pueblo de Los Angeles, just next door to the historic Olvera Street. This was the perfect venue for this type of event. Closing off the streets for the masses of people, everyone had a chance to bounce from station to station. The lines moved quickly to enter the event. Being out in the sun in the middle of the street is the only way to eat tacos.

The Food:
I think we ended up eating about 12 – 15 different kinds of tacos. Some of the stellar and interesting tacos came outside of Los Angeles. I was surprised to see some vendors coming from Mexico and Baja California. The seafood tostada from La Guerrerense from Ensenada was quite memorable. Bar Ama’s pork belly taco and nacho chili cheese sauce was stellar. The most interesting taco has to go to Corazon de Tierra’s duck pate taco. I was sad to have missed Kraken Taco’s grilled octopus taco. As a matter of fact, I was looking for any of the various octopus/squid tacos, but all were gone. Food ran out quickly, and I think that would have been one of the best of the bunch.

The Good:
Other than the delicious tacos, participants were able to drink and over-drink Jarritos! Tacos and Jarritos is just a perfect combination. The venue was perfect. It brought the historic Los Angeles essence into the whole event. Another good is that the lines moved quickly to get into the venue.

The Bad:
Though the lines to get into the venue was relatively quick. Some lines to the actual food was quite unbearable. This was usually caused by food not being prepped fast enough, or fans taking pictures with Danny Trejo 🙂 I know these vendors are producing some quality tacos, so the lines are understood. Though the event was supposed to last until 8PM, most of the vendors ran out of food by 5PM. Respect to the vendors who were still serving food until the end!

On a side note, food events such as these need to serve water. Eating tacos by the dozen and being out in the hot sun, you sometimes just need ice cold water. Jarritos is great, but you can’t beat ice cold water when you are parched.

The End:
This was my first Tacolandia event, so I don’t have past events to compare it to. As far a Los Angeles food events go, it went quite well. The food was quite diverse and the quality was exceptional. Tacolandia 2015 was fun and memorable. I can’t wait for next year’s event!

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Best Fish Taco in Ensenada – Baja Style

by Franklin on February 17, 2015

It is Tuesday! That, for me means tacos! What is not to love about a taco? When you have the perfect tortilla, the perfect fillings of meat, veggies and sauce, it is so delicious. Fish tacos are hard to come by. It’s easy to get a carne asada taco right, but to get a good fish taco, everything needs to be balanced. The batter needs to be light, and the fish, fresh. It goes without saying the tortilla and sauces need to be equally perfect. If one thing is off, the whole thing can be ruined. At Best Fish Taco in Ensenada (yes, that is the name of the restaurant), the bold statement of the name really holds true. In short, their fish tacos are delicious!

I liked the fish came straight out of the fryer. They give you just the tortilla and fish, and you dress it the way you like. From regular salsa to specialties like mango, pineapple, avocado guac salsa, the toppings are plenty. Putting the amount of salsa and crema I like, it made for the perfect fish taco just the way I like. The fish was fresh and tender, and the batter was just right. The shrimp taco was good too, but I favored the fish more.

To name your restaurant as being “the best” is a bold statement. I wouldn’t go as far as saying that these are the best fish tacos in LA, but they are quite delicious. The plan is simple. Make the fish fresh and let the customer top it off however they like. Their prices are low, and quality is high. With these simple ingredients, it is no wonder why it’s so tasty.

Best Fish Taco in Ensenada on Urbanspoon

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Tacos El Gordo – A Good Reason to Drive 4 Hours

by Franklin on November 6, 2014

On a recent trip to Las Vegas, we went pretty dang hard on some legit tacos. Tacos El Gordo is my new spot for tacos is Las Vegas. Sitauted right next to the Encore and Wynn resorts, the TG stands more on the north side of Vegas. The best part about TG is that they offer all of the meats, and they are all good. None really fall short of the other, and if anything, the carne asada is the worst one. That is saying much! Our first stop once we touched down to Vegas was Tacos El Gordo. The weekend was officially awesome.

The signature red trays are iconic. They first opened their doors in San Diego, and now they are here in Las Vegas. Life is good.

This is the tripas taco. The tripas (small intestine) had a nice crunch to them, just how I like it. Very tasty and delicious.

The lengua is another favorite of mine in a taco. The meat is beefy and very tender. So tender that it is too tender, but actually it’s not. (What kind of writing is this??) The meat just melts in your mouth, and is a perfect taco addition.

The al pastor was tasty as well. The sauce that they put was delicious and flavorful. The al pastor sits on a spit and is cut to order. The flavors are perfect and the meat is just perfect.

Tacos El Gordo is a good reason to stop by Vegas. Yeah, you can drive 2 hours or so to San Diego, but add another 2 hour drive, you get the deliciousness of Tacos El Gordo and the fun of Vegas. The ordering system is a bit crazy. There are different lines for different meats, and they have a lot of lines, and a lot of people, and a lot of different kinds of meats. All in all though, it is worth the wait and chaos.

Tacos el Gordo on Urbanspoon

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El Taurino – LA’s Favorite Taco

by Franklin on April 20, 2014

El Taurino, King Taco’s father, if you will is an LA hot spot — figuratively and literally. Not to say that El Taurinio is my favorite taco spot, but it holds a very special place in every Angelino’s heart. I try to think back and think when I had my first taco. God help me if my first taco was from Taco Bell. Unfortunately probable, I can blame my parents for that. I still remember having my first cinnamon twists from the late Taco Bell on Vermont and 4th location (one of many casualties from the LA Riots). Honestly though, I try to think of my first legit taco in life, and I can’t think of any other place it would come from, other than King Taco.


If not for the hot sauce (roja and verde), El Taurino and family would be quite basic. The carne asada and lengua is quite nice — salty enough to be good on its own with a nice chewy texture. The tortilla is nice as well along with the onions and cilantro. All this blank slate needs is either the red or the green. In my younger years, I would use almost a whole cup per taco. Today, I can barely handle it, and I find myself leaning towards the much milder green sauce. Both are equally delicious, and none is better than the other.


I’ve grown to like their tamales as well. I think it was a while ago when they had the dozen tamales for 12 bucks (something like that). That would last me for days, but I always remember eating these. The masa is always moist and the inside filling is fresh and tasty. Of course, these too taste amazing with the red and green sauce.


El Taurino is a popular drunchies spot. Open late, KTOWNers and Angelinos alike join together to enjoy some tacos. As a matter of fact, tacos in general seem to be good while a little tipsy. Whether its your local taco truck or tacos on the corner, the almighty taco is king. El Taurino though, for me and for many Angelinos, is the In-n-Out of tacos. It’s not necessarily the best tacos in the world, but in a way it is.

El Taurino on Urbanspoon

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