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Jun 29, 2006 04:59 PM

Best Roach Coach in L.A.?

And what you order from it.

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  1. Isn't best roach coach an oxymoron? Just kidding. Here in the SFV I've only been exposed to Triangle Catering Trucks and they're only as good as the cook you get on a particular route. For the last six months we had a great cook that made a kickass tuna melt with white chedder, a great machaca and egg burrito as well as a very good breakfast burrito. We have a new truck now and everything is awful.

    1. The Cemitas Truck on Venice near Overland infront of the Smart and Final. I had them for the first time this weekend after all the raves, and had a Cemitas Revelation (Before I didn't like them... have comepletely CHANGED MY MIND!) Ymmmmmm...

      The Cemitas in Carnitas and Milanesa de Polla are outstanding! :)


      6 Replies
        1. re: davinagr

          from modernist's reply on this thread:

          a cemita is a sandwhich. unlike the heavy torta bread, the cemita is a light roll type bread. the most popular meat is a milanesa but you can have everything from stewed pig skin to any type of roasted meats. it has slices of avocado (la china poblana is most generous in this dept) grilled peppers and some form of cheese. i think panela is the most common. you'll see lots of cemitas trucks in east la on whittier in the more western part of town.

          Also this link:

          But I still don't know how to pronounce it...

          1. re: peifferc

            Seh - Me - Tah

            And that is a great discription, the truck that I was talking about uses Quesillo, which is a Mexican Style Cream Cheese and I like TONS better than Panella on this type of sandwich (I perfer Panela with Tortas)


          2. re: davinagr

            I would add that Cemitas translate to Semites... as in Semitic, because they use a slightly sweet Lebanese style bun. (There is a strong Lebanese presence in Puebla... which also yielded the Tacos Arabes).

            In addition to the mentioned elements.... they also often contain a regional herb called Papalo or Papaloquelite... which was a common pre-hispanic herb in Central Mexico prior to the introduction of Cilantro which is infinitely easier to grow.

          3. re: Dommy

            hmmm..i've never had a cemitas before. sounds like I'll need to try one! What time is the cemitas truck normally there?

            1. re: Tmblweed

              Usually weekdays and weekends in the afternoon! :)


          4. Is there a difference between a roach coach, which I think of as a catering truck that goes from place to place along a route and a taco truck which I think of as a catering truck that finds itself to the same location day in and day out, like a restaurant on wheels (that sells tacos)?

            1. I think there is a wide range of "roach coaches" from greasy spoon to taco truck to gourmet seafood restaurant on wheels.

              The latter one is located on Figueroa in Highland Park right at Sycamore Park.

              The big blue truck serves only fresh seafood in the form of cocktails or tostadas. All cold, all fresh, all very cheap.

              The mixed tostada has shrimp, scallops, some fish and something else I can't remember. They pile it on a little hard tortilla with avocado, lemon and hotsauce. It's friggin great.

              Highly recommended. Make sure it's the blue one, not the white one. Not there on Tuesdays.

              2 Replies
              1. re: socal

                wow this sounds good. i'ma check it out.

                1. re: socal

                  Agreed this place is a complete gem... rare Mexico City seafood genious in L.A. According to the owner, the reason for his success are the secret ingredients, one of which is shark cartilege which enhances his trucks motto "Vitaminas Para Hombres"... "Vitamins For Males"

                2. as a little sub-thread, i'm curious to what you guys think are the best actual taco trucks? i only know of a legendary one in pasadena that everyone thinks is good but it wasn't even the one i was thinking of (which would be the one in the nishimura body shop lot on fair oaks)...

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: rameniac

                    The best taco trucks aren't trucks at all... the BEST L.A. Tacos I've had were from Taco Tables. The Tables have this impliment for braising, which is OUT Of this world. It looks like a hubcap, with the middle part being raised to cook things, and the surrounding area being sunk in to collect all the wonderful juices. Inside these juices are onions, jalapenos, tongues, sausages, meats. Bobbing around... get more and more tender... getting more and more FLAVOR!!

                    There used to be a table like this around the corner from my grandma's house, but it has sense GONE! The other table I know of is on Vermont near Venice. Look for the fire...



                    1. re: Dommy

                      ooo wow... i think there might be one of these at beaudry & 1st street right next to the 110 in downtown. looks like some sort of glorified portable cart or something that is there every night. i'll definitely have to investigate.

                      1. re: rameniac

                        Remember, look for the hubcap!! :) Best of luck with your search! :)


                      2. re: Dommy

                        Hey Dommy!

                        good call on the venice and vermont stand! I went there the other day. I wonder what kind of sausage that is in the hubcap? chorizo? I just went for the al pastor which was excellent. I love the way they grill the tortillas on the pork grease and then scoop up the pork with the tortillas.


                        1. re: Bandini

                          It's still there! HURRAY!! :) So glad you enjoyed it Bandini, I HIGHLY enjoy your blog... keep up the good work!! :)


                      3. re: rameniac

                        the best taco truck in LA in my opinion is El Matador at western and the 101. Mind you I havn't been to El Taquito Mexicano in Pasadena yet but they'll really have to impress to supplant El Matador.