Petty Cash Taqueria

712 S. Santa Fe Ave
Los Angees, California
Petty Cash Taqueria

Sarah Bennett Grilled scallop and coconut aguachile


  • Monday-Thursday, 6-10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 6-11 p.m.; Sunday closed.
The second iteration of Republique chef Walter Manzke and restaurateur Bill Chait’s “semi-authentic,” upscale-taqueria concept landed in the Arts District in August 2015, two years after the original opened in a prime storefront on busy Beverly Boulevard in the Fairfax district. In the time between the two, diners have become more accustomed to seeing fancy tacos like the grilled-octopus and al-pastor ones San Diego-born Manzke serves in Mid-City; and many seem to embrace the quality that comes with coddled tortillas and thoughtful fillings, despite the fact that that they can cost as much as six times as much as a street-bought version. The menu is less expansive than at Mid-City, but there are several interesting new items from chef de cuisine David Chavez unique to the downtown space. Here, you will not find the Ceviche Negro, sea bass tossed in black squid ink that has been a Petty Cash favorite. It is instead replaced with a soothing grilled scallop and coconut aguachile, tropical in sweetness, slippery in texture and spicy with chili oil. There are also, for the first time, tostadas -- including dungeness crab and braised oxtail. And for sides, try the calabacitas, bite-sized pieces of McGrath Farms squash cooked to gum-touch softness and topped with crumbly Mexican cheese that melts in the crevices. At only $4.50 for a bowl, it’s the cheapest thing on the menu.

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