Updated, 3:05 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 17: Due to unforeseen circumstances, Ricky Piña says that we're all going to have to wait a few more days for his already long-awaited taco truck. Ricky's Fish Taco truck will be rolling out this Friday, Dec. 20, as opposed to tomorrow. Same time, same place, same everything else -- you're just going to be two days hungrier. If it makes you feel better, Piña says he'll be giving out free aguas frescas on Friday to help you wash down all those tacos. Cheers, in advance.
First published Monday, Dec. 16. If you love truly excellent fish tacos, and you should, you've doubtless spent much of the last year following Ricky Piña and his traveling tent, as he moved from an East Hollywood parking lot to one in Chinatown, setting up to make the best fish and shrimp tacos in town. He's like our pied piper of Hamelin, his tacos as compelling as any music, and we followed him from one concrete universe to another, happy to sit at his portable picnic tables wherever he chose to put them.
As of 11 a.m. this Wednesday, get ready to follow Piña back to 1400 North Virgil Avenue -- but this time, finally, Ricky's Fish Tacos will be setting up shop not under a tent, but out of a fancy new food truck. Yes, the truck is finally here, a diesel vehicle outfitted with four fryers, an outdoor-access refrigerator and a 58-inch griddle. Imagine. Now we can follow Piña pretty much anywhere.
For people who don't do well with change, no worries: Piña will be making the same awesome fish and shrimp tacos he's been making since he started cooking them in 2009, from a recipe he adapted from the tacos his mother and grandmother made back in his native Ensenada.
What changes he's planning, and there will be some, will come once he's been up and running for a time. Look for lobster empanadas and "a couple new surprises," Piña promised, pausing last Saturday over a vat of oil under his tent in the Chinatown parking lot where he set up shop for a final weekend. There will be aguas frescas, though, for those of us used to bringing our own water.
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Ricky's Fish Taco truck will be up and running, starting this Wednesday, Dec. 18. Hours will be from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., seven days a week. (If you've tried parking after 4 p.m. on Virgil, you'll know why Piña closes before then.) Nighttime locations for the truck are TBA; follow Ricky's Fish Tacos on Twitter for updates.
A note about the location: Piña wanted to return to his old haunts, but this is probably a temporary move. He says he'll be looking for a bigger place with better parking in the future. Because now he's portable, isn't he. And we'll follow him wherever he goes.
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