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Jan 8, 2007 07:08 PM

Eastside Adventures: Can’t Win Them All...Tacos El Gavilan

Often after I take friends to an amazing hole in the wall, they compliment me with, “Dommy! You always pick the yummiest places to go! How do you know about these places?!” After I give Chowhound it’s much due credit, I then joke, that there is actually nothing magical about my restaurant picking ability, because I often try a place myself before bringing friends and hit a lot of duds... Case in point Tacos El Gavilan.

Located right off the 10 fwy on the corner of Central and Washington near Industrial L.A., this spot has always intrigued me. It used to be an old timey McDonalds (With the big arched over the whole building) and it’s always crowded. Plus, on it’s BIG sign out front, they tout a wide variety of Tortas, including the “Cubana” which I’ve been wanting SO to try for ages. And so one day after class I decided to stop on by...

Again, it was crowded, with quite the mixture of folks too. There were homeys, mechanics, an MTA worker, even a Cop in line in front of me. As I waited I looked around at the surroundings and saw a curious site. There was Gallon of milk on the counter. Just a big plastic jug of ross-swiss, not in ice or anything. Just on the counter, I assume so folks could add some coffee... I walked up to it and it was luke warm.. Bleh... Then on the other side, where the Salsa table was, there was pot of beans... Not one of those electric soup pots that most places use, just a standard industrial kitchen POT. Needless to say, this also kinda worried me...

I placed my order to go and then crossed my fingers that the food inside would have been prepared with a bit more care... Although I admit, I kinda scaled down my order once I got to the window...

* Torta Cubano: When I got home, I saw the smallest skinniest torta I’ve seen in a while. A Cubano is a mix of Milanesa, Pork, Cheese and Hot Dogs, Well the first three ingredients were sliced almost paper thin!! And the hot dogs were mushy sub-par farmer john quality... Bleh...

* Carnitas Burrito: I did a close up of this, because it’s only way you can see the MEAT in it... :P It was full of rice and beans and the occasional bite of Carnitas It was also smaller than the typical Taco Stand Burrito...

So there we have it... I tried it so you don’t have to... Through out last quarter though, I did explore more this area down Central, and there indeed some gems... Reports on those are coming soon! :



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  1. Sorry about the bad experience. I go pretty regularly for their carnitas burritos at lunch time during the week and while they're not my absolute favorite, it's a cheap and convenient location. I look forward to your other posts in the area.

    1. Dommy, check out:

      El Cihualteco Taqueria # 1
      2325 1/2 S. San Pedro St.
      Los Angeles
      213 748-2519

      1. i've been there more than once and it's true. they're mediocre.

        1. that torta cubano sent shivers down my spine. (pardon, the cliche)

          a definite cholesterol bomb.

          1. I happen to like their plain quesadilla or asada quesadilla. Lot's of cheese, and very meaty. Although it's pretty greasy, the price makes it almost neglible. On the side are sliced radish, a big jalapeno, and small salad. Plus it's steaming hot when it's served. Not bad for under 5 bucks.