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Friday, February 23, 2007

Taqueria Tiscareno - Review #1

Date of Visit: February 10, 2007
Taqueria Tiscareno
1639 W Chapman Ave
Orange, CA 92868
(714) 937-5917

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Taqueria Tiscareno - Exterior

UPDATE: This location has closed down.

Having not been to any hole-in-the-wall (that term has no negative connotation for me) restaurants recently I realized it was time to get back to some. I would've never found out about Tiscareno's if I wasn't invited since they don't have an official website (although they are working on one), there's almost no mention of them yet on the web, and their storefront is so small you could probably be in their shopping center and hardly even realize they are there. That's where people such as myself who have idiosyncratic, myopic blogs that focus on nothing but Mexican restaurants in only one county step in, uncovering and pointing out many hidden gems along the way.

When you approach Tiscareño's you find that their front door is not actually facing their shopping center's parking lot but is just around the corner facing a nice little breezy courtyard.

Taqueria Tiscareno - Salsa Bar

A TV and a jukebox are at your command:

Taqueria Tiscareno - Jukebox

Tiscareño's serves tortillas that are made fresh daily at their West Anaheim location then shipped to their location in Orange. They also provide catering services.

Taqueria Tiscareno - Menu Board

My lunch consisted of a bowl of pozole soup (pork, hominy, shredded cabbage, and sliced radishes) and an al pastor taco, made of pulled barbecued pork with lots of onions and cilantro. A whole plate full of chips topped with beans and cheese came on the side. This was all washed down with a big cup of horchata. I should have learned by now that at many restaurants a bowl of pozole soup is a meal in and of itself. I ate the taco and about a third of the hearty, tangy soup, supping up all of its down home goodness, before having to take the rest back with me when I got too full to proceed any further.

Taqueria Tiscareno - Taco and Pozole

About nine months ago I posed the question on my blog: What makes Mexican food authentic or inauthentic? Nobody seemed to know the answer. It always seems to be based on a gut feeling and those who have the most experience with Mexican food have the most weight put on their opinions. Anyways, my gut feeling says that Tiscareño's is high on the authenticity scale.

According to my fairly arbitrary, almost (but not totally) meaningless, rating system Taqueria Tiscareno earns a 3¾ Speedy Gonzales rating:

Speedy Gonzales Speedy Gonzales Speedy Gonzales Speedy Gonzales


Chubbypanda said...

Hole-in-the-wall has many favorable connotations for me. I love your "myopic focus".

ChristianZ said...

Then "myopic" it shall continue to be. Think you're going to the Crazy Taco Night?

Chubbypanda said...

Definitely giving it some thought. I'm pretty busy this month, though. I was at the office until 8pm on Saturday. Stupid crunch time.

elmomonster said...

Al pastor is my default taco of choice. Do you know of any place near Tustin or Irvine that do it right? I've had the one at El Gallo Giro, and it was kind of disappointing. My favorite is this hole-in-the-wall in Bellflower whose name escapes me for the moment.

Johnny Automatic said...

went for lunch today and had the dos tacos de camerones special. $5.95 for a ton of food and a drink. Each taco was almost Chronic Tacos size and you got 2 along with rice, beans and an appetizer of beans and sauce over chips. The shrimp was only lightly battered which was nice and came with guacamole, tomatoes, cabbage and crema mexicana as toppings. Left stuffed and satisfied.

Johnny Automatic said...

oh and interesting side note - there is a Mexican bakery (Guadalajara) that is getting ready to open next door. So that might be an added treat for this location.

ChristianZ said...

Hopefully more people will notice this humble little gem when the bakery opens.