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Thursday, June 13, 2013

DCWD Travels: Guisados, LA

Neighborhood: Two locations, Echo Park and Boyle Heights, Los Angeles

The Setup

We couldn't very well leave Los Angeles without some Mexican food, and Official Friend of DCWD Mark had just the place: best-tacos-in-LA contender Guisados.

The Vibe

As it turns out, we ended up at the second Guisados location, an expansion of the original's shop brought on by the success of its product. The Echo Park location sits along the roadside like a diner, a standalone spot that is set up much the same way: a large kitchen in full view, with no frills decor, behind the ordering counter. A hallway that slinks around to some indoor seating and the patio in the back, where the decor is still setting up; a mural is outlined on the brick behind a fountain. It's as relaxed and clean as can be, while still being a little bit hole-in-the-wall.

The Food

There are full tacos, but I decided to go with the sampler combo: miniature versions of the first six tacos off the menu: two types of steak (one with salsa rojo, one picado), two types of chicken (mole poblano, and tinga de pollo), and two types of pork (chuleta with salsa verde, and a spicy cochinita pibil). There were a lot to love about these little bites. One was the quality of the tortilla; I usually don't love corn tortillas for my tacos, despite how traditional they are, but these were baked with a clear level of care that eschewed the grittiness and lack of flavor that I usually associate with corn tortillas, and replaced it with something much more comforting.

The sampler size was also perfect: just enough to make it a small one or two-bite affair, but without skimping on the filling. A guisado is a stew, and each little stewed meat was incredible, with varying degrees of heat, but all with good punches of flavor. I'd pick a favorite, but all of them melded into a wonderful oh-my-god-so-this-is-what-real-Mexican-tastes-like afternoon.

The Verdict

Incredible tacos.

Food Rating: *** 1/2
(out of 5)
Date Rating: 1.5 Hearts (out of 5)
Dress Code:
Bar Rating:
(out of 5) (less than $25 for two)

Guisados on Urbanspoon

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