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Aug 25, 2006 04:55 AM

top echo park mexican spots??

so i'm moving to echo park from los feliz, and am wondering if anyone has done a thorough investigation of the mexican/salvadorean spots. honestly the only places ive been to are el siete mares down the road in silverlake for their awesome fish tacos, el rodeo on sunset where i always order the sopes w/ no meat (i love when i order no carne at a mexican place cuz they look at me like i have 3 heads) and la paz i think it's called on echo park ave. for their pupusas. the pupusas were good but they are really SLOW so dont go if you're in a hurry. there are just so many places it'd be nice to know which ones i can definitely weed out. i'm also curious as to how the seafood places on sunset measure up (i forget their names, but one is like el pescado something). lastly where should i go for a nice fresh torta ~ i havent had one since i moved here and i fiend for them every so often! now ill be even closer to east LA which is a whole other entity, but i plan on going to el tepeyac (sp?) soon for their famous burritos. thanks for any info!

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  1. Costa Alegre (Sunset next to Taix restaurant) has decent fish tacos but everything else I've tried is terrible.

    Rodeo Grill (Sunset) is good standard fast food Mexican (as you've seen from the sopes). I like their tortas a lot, but my boyfriend doesn't. Try them.

    Happy Tom's (a block west of Rodeo Grill) is apparently owned by the same people as the Rodeo Grill and has a very similar menu. I think the Rodeo Grill is better.

    Taco's Ariza's (taco truck on Logan between Sunset and Park, it's there most evenings). Tacos are not great, the meat is fatty and stringy.

    Taco lady on Logan Street (between Sunset and Park, closer to Echo Park Lake, she's there on Saturday and Sunday during the day). When I used to live right next to her set-up the smells would drive me crazy. These tacos are really good and the evidence is in the constant crowd of people waiting.

    Tacos al Domicilio (Alvarado next to the Ralph's, not sure of hours). These are also good tacos, good condiments and salsas.

    Barragan's (Sunset, east of Echo Park Ave). This is a nicer sit down restaurant than all those I've mentioned before. Standard combo plates, good margaritas. I think they have free nachos when you buy a margarita during happy hour on Wednesdays. I much prefer this place to...

    El Compadre (further east on Sunset). Very similar to Barragan's but they offer flaming margaritas which are pretty good. The food, however, is not great. Don't go.

    Taco's Mexico (Glendale at Alvarado). Avoid this place like the plague. Other locations of this chain may be better, but this place has flies everywhere and the worst tacos I've ever had in Los Angeles.

    La Parilla (next to Siete Mares on Sunset). Go for the molcajetes and you will not be disappointed. One molcajete feeds two people and includes excellent carne asada, chicken, panela cheese, nopales, onions and jalepenos. Rice, beans and soup on the side. The molcajete with seafood comes with four beers! I thought it was absolutely delicious.

    I think those are all the Mexican places I've tried in Echo Park. Happy eating!

    1 Reply
    1. re: themirthmobile

      I went to El Compadre last Friday night, and must say their carnitas are not to my liking(dry, crispy, almost pork jerky-like if there is such a thing), yet the lengua(tongue) is wonderful. Combo plates are pretty standard. Like the place and the food better than Barragans by quite a bit, yet wish they would not start the music so early. Can't even have a conversation at 7p.m. once they get going.

    2. thanks fr the great info, tmm, much appreciated. i'm wondering what you think of el siete mares' fish tacos? i swear they are as good as the ones i ate in ensenada. speaking of which, ive yet to go to tacos bajas ensenada, but i will try to get there soon.

      the taco lady sounds awesome, but unfortunately i work weekend days. hopefully not for too much longer tho. also, i'm really eager to try those molcajetes @ la parilla, they sound so yummy. i know they have another branch in boyle heights, i wonder if they are both the same in quality. anyway, ill let you know when i try rodeo grill's tortas, and i think ill give happy tom's a try just to see how they measure up. happy eating to u 2!

      1 Reply
      1. re: unocal

        i like the fish tacos at siete mares, but once i took them to go and by the time they got home they were too soggy to enjoy. so i guess one should always eat in there. at 7 mares i've also tried the pescado a la diabla which was the spiciest thing ever but really good if you can handle the heat and the shrimp a la plancha (ew, don't ever get this it was so dry). i think the fish tacos at La Taquiza are really good too (and they have the best al pastor i've tried). it's close to USC so not in the neighborhood, but worth the drive in my opinion.

        i think la parilla has a couple other locations but i haven't tried them.

        la taquiza
        3009 S Figueroa St
        Los Angeles, CA 90007