“Sport Taco” Truck in North Austin (corner of Lamar & Parmer Lane)
- MPH Aug 14, 2007 07:08 PM
I’m not in north Austin very often, but every now and then I head up there for business or chowhounding—or sometimes both. The other day, I spied a taco truck called “Sport Taco” in a gas-station parking lot on the southwest corner of Parmer and Lamar. Of course, I had to check it out.
I tried a couple of tacos: the carne guisada and the barbacoa, both on flour tortillas. The tortillas, by the way, were pretty good. They reminded me of the ones from Don Luis: thin, shortening-rich, and homemade-tasting. I didn’t get a chance to ask about them, but from the texture, I’d guess that they make the tortillas themselves, by hand. The carne guisada was flavorful, but a bit unusual in that there was no “gravy” or sauce at all. It was just moist, seasoned meat. It was almost as though it was made with a dry rub. It was nice and salty, which is always good to me. The barbacoa was of the non-greasy shredded-roast-beef variety. This is not my favorite kind, but at least it wasn’t dry and stringy. They provided little baggies of green salsa that was a bit spicy: not exceptional, but not bad. They also provided a baggie with limes and cucumbers. So, you have some options for doctoring up any less-than-spectacular taco fillings.
That’s all I’ve tried to date. From that very small sample, I’d say that Sport Taco might be comparable in quality (though different in style) to Don Luis, pre-downhill-slide. Those of you who work in the area might want to check this place out. Or, if you already have, maybe post back with details about what you like?
Coincidentally, I had to be in the area today. I concur on the flour tortillas--tasty and definitely not machine-made. The corn tortillas were good, but not exceptional. I tried the chicharrones, and the impression was similar to your description of the carne guisada: well seasoned and cooked, but without any liquid salsa. It was not overly hot, but it had a nice kick of green chile. The picadillo was spicy, and had carrot and peas in it. The pastor was of the sauteed-pork-strip type.
I'm impressed enough to stop back when I'm in that area of town, and I might want to try the Colombian specialties (a tamale and something else) that were mentioned on a hand-written sign.
Thanks as always for the tip.
re: Mike B
What an interesting puzzle. I remember that the business cards had two names on them: one male, one female—with different last names. They seemed unrelated to Don Luis. I thought I still had one of the cards, but I'm afraid I don't.
Sport Taco's tortillas seemed similar to those from DL, but not the fillings. Of course, I haven't been back to DL since I noticed the downhill slide. So, who knows? Now I wish that I’d stopped to ask questions at Sport Taco instead of just grabbing two tacos and driving off.
Could there be more than one taco truck near that intersection? This one was white, with small windows, and it had a lot of colorful handwritten signs on it. The side with a name on it (which was the only name that I saw) clearly said "Sport Taco," as did the cards. Does that sound like the same taco truck you've seen?
After more than a week of complete silence, I feared that the interrogation might have gotten out of hand, so I headed over for another look. They are still there and in good spirits.
The chicharrones were spicier than I remembered them, and slightly moister, and the tortillas were just as good as before. In response to a pleasant question, the gentleman who mans the range said that the tortillas are homemade by them, and heated for the first time right there in the trailer.
The new thing I tried on the spur of the moment was a beef empanada. I didn't know what to expect, but I was pleased. It was small (maybe half of a 3-inch circle), and filed with what tatsed like a mild combination of ground beef and potato. The thing that made it stand out was the crust. I'm not good at discerning all the ingredients from the final product, but I'd guess it was a flour-based dough, dusted with corn meal, and then fried. The end result was golden brown and light: very refreshing.
Now that I know that in this case no news was good news, I'm intrigued to try their banana-leaf-wrapped tamale at some point.
Thanks for the follow-up report, Knoblauch. I finally found Sport Taco's business card. They claim to offer "delicious tacos made on the spot," with "quality ingredients." The owners are Johana Paez and David Aguirre, and their phone number is 512-619-4270.
The owner of Don Luis Supertacos is named Luis, as you might guess. I can't remember his last name at the moment, although this info used to be on the printed menu. I just noticed that DL has opened a new location in Round Rock, with limited offerings (http://www.donluissupertacos.com/ ). The downhill slide at the old location may be a result of these growing pains. I'm still hoping they prove to be temporary and not fatal.
Is this the same place that still exists there today? I have been before but not caught the name.. if it is, the lady serves the best tacos IMO because they are loaded with whatever you order be it eggs potato chicken beef etc.. i ordered 2 breakfast tacos and a chicken fajita taco for about $5 and it was more than enough to eat