Update on Taco Trucks de Santa Rosa
- Melanie Wong
The taco trucks in the Roseland district on Sebastopol Road between Dutton and Stony Point continue to provide some of the best meals, especially for a quick bite after 9 pm when nearly everything else is closed. Earlier posts on several of these trucks are linked below. During the winter months dining al fresco has been nippy but bearable if you dress warmly. The overhead canopies keep rain off the folding tables. Heres an update on two favorites and a new one to report.
Antojitos Mexicanos Cuatro Milpas parks in the sports bar lot near Stony Point Road from 6 to 11pm or until sold out. In two visits, the birria and the coctel de elote have already been gone by the time I arrived. A lengua taco, $1, is only fair, and the tostada de ceviche, $2.50, has a muddy taste. The super sope de carne asada, $3.50, is decent but the masa base of the sope tasted as if it had been made ahead and reheated instead of being prepared to order. The best item tried is the tostada de lomo de puerco, $2.75 made of garlicky pork loin with a nice browned crust even if it was a bit dry. This truck also has the elusive guayaba (guava) flavored Jarritos soda for $1.50.
La Texanita (the one near the car wash) has expanded its hours to 10:30am to 10pm to capture more dinner traffic since business has slowed down. With an outdoor heater under the canopy and the cleanest tables on the row, its now absolutely deluxe. The aguas have been temporarily discontinued, as it seems a separate permit is required to operate the drink machines outside the truck. However, theyre working on restoring this. For winter time, a hot cup of atole (available after 5pm) fits the bill at $1.50. The version here is less heavy but has an ultrasmooth creamy texture and tastes of creamed corn, fresh whole milk, vanilla and butterscotch. Buche (pork stomach) and cabeza (head but actually beef cheeks) have been added to the carne menu, to make up for the loss of carnitas due to the broken deep-fryer. In a taco, $1, the buche was very smooth and clean-tasting. Also recommended is the quesadilla tejana carne asada, $4, and this is still the best ceviche around here.
The Delicias Elenitas parked in the abandoned Bad Benitas gas station continues to be my favorite all-round. A new fluorescent orange cardboard sign on the front of the truck facing Sebastopol proclaims the special offerings in scrawled handprinting: pozole, pambasos, huaraches, sopes, quesadilla de maiz, gorditas, and enchiladas. The pozole, $4, was chockfull of hominy and gelatinous pork trotters in a light, tasty broth and accompanied by fresh chopped onions, cilantro, limes, oregano, and chilis. My new preferred topping for huarache, $4, is choripapas, a greasy sauté of chorizo and waxy cubes of potatoes. The quesadilla de maiz, $4, is a large fresh masa crepe folded over a huge amount of carne filling and melted cheese. The edges are crispy from the cheese that oozes over and browns on the side and the whole thing is topped with crema, salsa verde, shredded iceberg lettuce and queso blanco. This is to a huarache what a calzone is to pizza. I had mine with beef tinga, which was very ropey and beefy but not tasting as strongly of chipotle peppers on this day. The enchiladas are in a flat format Ive never seen before. Medium-sized thick corn tortillas are dipped in red chili sauce, folded in half over a filling of jack cheese and a bit of minced onion, and then heated on the flat top to melt the cheese and heat through. Four of these are overlapped on half a dinner plate then topped with shredded lettuce, cilantro, crema, salsa verde and queso blanco. A quarter of the plate is piled with sliced radishes, lime wedges, and pickled jalapenos. The remaining quadrant is filled with chunks of sweet carrots and potatoes sauteed in chorizo grease. The final layer is five thin slices of pan-fried, chewy beef steak arranged on top of everything. With a cup of atole, this delicious dinner extravaganza was $7.50, the most Ive ever spent for a meal at this truck. The atole here is the thick, grainy style and full of nutmeg and cinnamon spice. Also recommended is the torta de cubana, $5.
re: Larry Stein
That one was just for you, Larry! I have another find in RRV, but the menu's at home and will have to wait until tonight to post.
Sadly I'll miss you at Joseph Swan and won't be taking part in the Russian River Wine Road barrel tasting extravaganza this year. I'm on the hook for some wine judging through the weekend further south. 1100 entries for 27 judges in 9 panels. Please keep your fingers crossed that I don't end up with the Chardonnays under $15 category!
re: Melanie Wong
Oh ick, I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy (well, actually I would...)
Think red...think red...
I'm sorry I'll miss you. What wine competition is this? I saw the ad in yesterday's Chron for the SF Wine Competition tasting. Is that the one?
Tonight's J-N Gagnard vertical starts a week of excess for me. Three offlines on Sat (Tastings in Healdsburg), Tues (Acquerello) and Thurs (Spiedini in Walnut Creek). Can't wait!
re: Larry Stein
Did you have a chance to try 'em? Also, I'd love to get an update on Tastings, it's been a long time since anyone has posted on the restaurant. Glad you were there instead of Dry Creek Kitchen which I've heard four different friends pan in the last week!
I'm sorry I missed the Gagnard vertical...can't taste every fine wine I'm offered. I will try to make the white Graves tasting this week.
The wine deal was the Monterey Wine Competition. My panel had 71 Chardonnays from the 99 vintage, but it was almost made up for by some nice Malbecs, Cab Francs and Syrahs/Shirazes.