Sunday, June 28, 2009

25 Things I Love About LA #5 - TACOS!!!

I'm fairly certain it's an unoriginal comparison, but tacos are to Los Angeles what pizza is to NYC and kebabs are to London. In LA, you'll find a taco stand/truck/shop on every corner. And everybody has their "local". Mine is Cactus Tacos (#1, the original Hollywood outpost) at Vine and Romaine.
It's a small operation, what I would refer to as a taco shack - in the best possible way. But despite the tiny size (and kitchen), they put out a huge menu. They offer all the standards - tacos, burritos, tortas and other things like salads and breakfast dishes. I also noted a curious recent addition of french fries, which I'm fairly certain are for the late night, post-bar crowd.

To create many variations on these dishes, they offer nearly a dozen meats, including: carnitas, pollo, cabeza (cow's head), tinga (a smoky shredded chicken), lengua (tongue, which is awesome), carne asada and my all time favorite pastor. Pastor is BBQ'd pork, as opposed to carnitas, which is fried pork. And in my humble opinion, Cactus' is the best in LA.
You order at the window, wait a few minutes until it's all put together and then grab a seat at one of the nine picnic tables scattered around. Dining al fresco is the perfect way to eat these hand-sized treats. How else are you going to hear all the neighborhood gossip, gawk at the fine ladies and gents and get a tan?

Three tacos plus a soda come to a whopping $5. It's not only one of the tastiest lunches in town, it's one of the cheapest as well.


Unknown said...

LA probably does have Chicago beat in this category, but we are a close second place that's for sure!

Sarah said...

Really? I would so not put Chicago and tacos together. Brats, deep dish, hell yes, but tacos... I'm intrigued.

Unknown said...

Chicago has the second largest Mexican population in the country, behind LA. That makes for a boat load of great tacquerias!