Monday, August 20, 2012

The Original Pasadena Taco Truck - El Taquito Mexicano

Spent a super weekend in Santa Cruz hanging with old close friends and making great new ones. I'm totally inspired now to wear a suit vest on a regular basis and learn the fine art of cocktail making. But I digress and tonight just sharing some street tacos from the El Taquito Mexicano truck in Pasadena. Swung by last night on the drive back down where the small detour was time well spent before trekking out the final stretch.

I've yet to try the other truck up the street which I've heard was decent. But you could say I'm partial to these $1.25 tacos that were a staple during my college years (I remember first bumblingly mentioning about back in 2010). Was a bit surprised to find the vehicle now painted fire engine red and gratuitously decorated in stickers. A shelf table even stretched across one of the concrete walls at the otherwise longtime unchanged Nishikawa Auto Service space.

At least superficially things seemed to have changed some but glad to report the tacos were still quite good as they were. In the above photo starting from the bottom going counterclockwise--Cabeza (head), Lengua (tongue) and two Al Pastors. The doubled mini tortillas here are the style rejuvenated by steam instead with some grease on a hot griddle. Light and fluffy I always thought went well with the more finely minced meats and roasty hot salsa. The chopped cilantro and onions are fresh with further accent sprite given by a light squeeze of lemon.
The Cabeza taco this time was more neutral in flavor but still with nice small bits of fat speckled about. Maybe on the mystery side in consistency but definitely unctuous. Can't eat many but usually order one a visit.
Lengua in some shops I occasionally run into ones chopped into large chunks that at least for me has a rather unpleasant texture. Here instead it's a finer shred that along with an enjoyable light gaminess also makes them undeniable good eats.
The Al Pastor from this truck is not directly carved from a vertical spit but always flavorful and moist, if missing those tasty charred bits.

Wouldn't care to compare El Taquito with the county's best as it would be missing the point. Better tacos aside they surely are ones that I most often miss and reminisce.

El Taquito Mexicano Truck, (Nishikawa Auto Service lot after 8PM?) 510 S Fair Oaks Ave, Pasadena, CA 91105


Cathy Doe said...

Very nice. The college foods evoke good memories for me, too. Only have passed the Auto Service parking lot during daylight, but will now make an effort to be there one evening.

Dennis K. said...

Hi Cathy! Most college foods evoke good memories for me anyways, haha. ;) I almost didn't drop by the night but glad I did.

K and S said...

college food for me was pizza, I like your college food better :)

Dennis K. said...

Hi Kat! Pizza I think is inescapable in college. I had plenty burgers too, haha.