Tacos los Poblanos Estilo Tijuana

5711 S. Central Ave.
South L.A., California 90011
Tacos los Poblanos Estilo Tijuana +

Anne Fishbein Carne asada tacos


  • Wed.-Mon., 6-11 p.m.
One of L.A.’s most visceral food pleasures involves driving a few miles southeast of USC, where two of the city’s best taco vendors set up shop nightly a mere two miles apart. Both offer Tijuana-style tacos made with superlative carne asada — proper carne asada, taco aficionados will insist — which is unfurled on a charcoal grill in long meaty sheets, then hacked into manageable nubs on a large wooden chopping block. Both vendors pat out tortillas by hand and cook them to order on a large griddle, and both load their tacos with a scoop of thick, buttery guacamole, a sprinkle of chopped onions and a dab of smoky salsa. Wrapped tightly in squares of wax paper, they resemble meaty ice cream cones more than they do tacos. Tacos los Poblanos on Central Avenue and the colloquially named Tire Shop Taqueria on Avalon are so similar you might think they were branches of the same operation. Do we have to pick just one? The hours at Tacos los Poblanos are a little more consistent, the seating a bit more accommodating, and the char on the meat a bit more intense. And there are other perks: On a Saturday night, a mango merchant pulled up in his truck and began offering free slices to those waiting in the line. You couldn’t have dreamed up a better appetizer. —Garrett Snyder
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