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Craving tacos Al Pastor-Phoenix

t
travelchow Apr 25, 2008 10:16 AM

Looking for the best Tacos Al Pastor in Central Phoenix (done the traditional way) My husband is from SF and ate these in the mission district growing up. I tried to make them, they were good but obvioulsy not done on the spit. Anyplace do them on the spit and if not who has the best?

  1. ajs228 Apr 25, 2008 10:40 AM

    I would try Ranch Market on 16th St. & Roosevelt. They've got the spit with the pineapple rings and onions right there.

    6 Replies
    1. re: ajs228
      t
      travelchow Apr 30, 2008 10:23 AM

      has anyone been to Robert's Taco shop in the gas station (I believe that's the name) he was on Diner's, Drive-in's and Dives for his tacos al pastor but he did them on a flat top?

      1. re: travelchow
        Firenza00 Apr 30, 2008 12:45 PM

        Roberto's is the name. 7th Ave and Union Hills.

        1. re: Firenza00
          ajs228 Apr 30, 2008 03:03 PM

          I have been there. I've had their pastor (it's good!), and they've got the big spit of meat too. I didn't see, but it's possible they finish the mean on the grill.

          1. re: ajs228
            ajs228 May 2, 2008 12:44 PM

            Ok, I went to Roberto's for lunch today, and there is no Pastor spit. I could have sworn there used to be. The Texas burrito was good, though.

            1. re: ajs228
              Rubee May 4, 2010 05:34 PM

              I thought they did too. We haven't been in a while, but I had heard that the family that had opened Roberto's in the Shell station had moved to the Anthem location. The current one in the Shell is same name, but different owners.

              Picture of carnitas and al pastor tacos from original Roberto's:
              http://www.chow.com/restaurants/23714...

              -----
              Roberto's Mexican Food
              39510 N. Daisy Mountain Drive, Suite 170, Anthem, AZ 85086

          2. re: Firenza00
            a
            ajthefoodie May 4, 2010 02:32 AM

            There is also a Roberto's in Anthem, in the Fry's shopping plaza. Really good Tacos al Pastor!! Great salsa, too. Cheap!

      2. twodogs Apr 30, 2008 10:35 AM

        Ranch Market has the vertical spit with the meat on it but when I order tacos al pastor they get the meat from the steam table and it appears that the spit is more for appearance than anything.Their tacos al pastor taste just like all the other places in Phoenix that are done on a flat top.Nothing like what I'm used to in Mexico.
        If anyone knows of a place that has "real" tacos al Pastor actually carved off the spit, I'd love to know where it is.

        1 Reply
        1. re: twodogs
          hohokam Apr 30, 2008 02:21 PM

          I think the spit roasting method might run afoul of the health codes in many US jurisdictions. Apparently, the inspectors frown on the raw meat near the spit being kept in the 40-140-degree "danger zone" for extended periods. I don't know if Maricopa County has cracked down on this, but something I read said that Harris County in Texas (Houston area) has pretty much outlawed this method.

        2. twodogs Apr 30, 2008 10:41 AM

          This is what I think of when I am craving tacos al pastor.

           
          1. ipsedixit Apr 30, 2008 01:50 PM

            Not on a spit, but La Tolteca makes a good tacos al pastor.

            1 Reply
            1. re: ipsedixit
              t
              travelchow May 1, 2008 02:59 PM

              Thanks for the rec.'s , i will have to check them out. Does anyone know if Pepe's Taco Villa makes them?

            2. tastyjon May 1, 2008 10:05 PM

              Have you tried El Nopalito?

              It's a fave among several regualr posters here... a totally divey, minimal, strip mall place but with fantastic street-style tacos.

              I don't know if their Al Pastor tacos are carved from the spit, but I do know you can order 5 different types of fillings and each are distinct in flavor and texture. Pork, chicken, asada, etc. Some taste as though they are fresh off a BBQ and others seem to have been stewing nicely for hours in a green chile sauce.

              Now I'm craving tacos!

              Linky thing not working:
              2831 N 24th St
              Phoenix, AZ 85008

              2 Replies
              1. re: tastyjon
                t
                travelchow May 2, 2008 12:06 PM

                NO, I will have to give it a try, thanks for the rec.!

                1. re: travelchow
                  m
                  Mr.fede May 30, 2008 12:10 PM

                  Hey guys let's face it if is not done on the spit is not a taco al pastor - is one place in Glendale, on 53 av and Glendale av - they have the meat on the slpit but the flavor is not the correct one - I wish I can find a place that really make the autentic ones - some plces outside Chicago have big spits - if you really find one please let me know - I will drive to and eat 20

              2. t
                tacostim May 1, 2010 11:38 PM

                I finally found tacos al pastor from the spit in Phoenix. It took forever. Americas Taco Shop 2041 N 7th street does them and they are fantastic!!! I put them right up with El Tizoncito, La Califa, and Rincon in el DF. My girlfriend is chilanga and agrees with me. I kind of avoided this restaurant even though I was hearing good things about it because the name is kind of strange. Americas Taco shop sounds like it would be geared toward Tex Mex or something. America is actually the womans name who owns the two Americas Taco Shops in Phoenix. with her husband She is from Mexico. I kept hearing that they have great carne asada, so the first taco I had was the asada. It was great. My girlfriend and I were still very suspicious waiting for the pastor. These are classic pastor. crispy and soft pork at the same time, achiote seasoned, thin delicious corn tortilla, perfect amount of pina! The one thing that is strange about these tacos is that they automatically add guacamole. It is too overpowering and I reordered two more sin guacamole. These arrived perfectly done!!!! PERFECT. The salsa was great and they carry the good habanero bottled sauce to spice it up. Only one little lime will come with it, so my advice is to order you tacos al pastor without the guac and with extra limes. Go try them now!!!!!

                4 Replies
                1. re: tacostim
                  p
                  Phoenix99 May 4, 2010 03:07 PM

                  The good news: I visited America's Taco Kitchen today and the taco Tuesday special was 4 Tacos Al Pastor for $6.75. That equates to getting one for free.

                  The bad news: At 11:20am the Al Pastor was not yet ready. Bummer.

                  They gave me 4 carne asada tacos for the special price and they were fabulous as usual. We've been going to ATS since it opened but haven't been in awhile. I believe the Al Pastor is relatively new and it certainly was not on the menu originallly. It sounds like Taco Tuesday will be a regular special. and they were letting later arrivals order 2 and 2 so you didn't have to order all Al Pastor.

                  Too bad tacostim avoided this place for so long. You need to listen to Chowhounders on stuff like this. If a bunch of Chowhounders post the carne asada is outstanding you can usually bank on it. No Americanized Tex Mex on this website!

                  -----
                  America's Taco Shop
                  2041 N 7th Street, Phoenix, AZ

                  1. re: Phoenix99
                    johnseberg May 4, 2010 03:52 PM

                    America's has made some changes in the past few months. The additions of: Al Pastor, a second location, and a website. http://www.americastacoshop.net

                    1. re: johnseberg
                      m
                      Moulaert Dec 11, 2010 04:41 PM

                      I was stranded at the Phoenix Airport and decided to try some local tacos. After reading this thread I decided to go to the ATS on 7th Street. A quick 5 minute drive from the Best Western I arrived at this non-descript neighborhood - but hey I was there for the food. I asked about the "tacos al pastor" and the cashier actually opened the kitchen door and show me a large spit of marinated pork. I had three and they were great - yes like tacostim says they add guacamole and give you little lime but I ate them like that and though they were great. I also had a carne asada taco, which was not that interesting. For closing I had a "pastor vampiro" which comes on a hard tortilla with cabbage, guacamole, pico de gallo. That was actually very good. This place is quick, dirt cheap and clean. I would give them five stars except that after paying and getting back in my car one of the locals hurled a bottle of coke at my car window, which thank God didn't break (the bottle DID break) but gave me quite a scare. I guess its a rough area... I am not sure if this person was a patron or just some crazy person walking on the street. Of course, I didn't stop to find out! so, well I guess I wouldn't go to that ATS thankfully there are other ATS' in town - check their site: http://www.americastacoshop.net - all this said - the food was great and after eating all of that I think I am going to skip dinner! Enjoy.

                      1. re: Moulaert
                        exit2lef Dec 11, 2010 07:19 PM

                        Coronado isn't really rough, nor would I call it non-descript. It's actually a pretty interesting historic district. The bottle incident sounds like an anomaly, but I'm sorry you had to experience it. Regardless, I've developed a fondness for the newest ATS location in Tempe due to its extensive patio seating and liquor license.

                2. p
                  Poerz May 5, 2010 07:50 AM

                  What about La Frontera, the taco truck at 16th St. and Van Buren? I haven't been there in awhile - my bad - but I seem to recall Tacos Al Pastor using a spit.

                  1. t
                    tacostim May 5, 2010 06:50 PM

                    I am sorry Phoenix99 that the pastor was not ready. It is very good information though. I was going to cruise down there for lunch (it is NOT close to my work) and I would have been out of luck too. I actually just called them and asked what time ithe pastor is ready to go and they told me 11:00 am, so hopefully that is accurate. I am going to Mexico City in a couple weeks and am pumped to hit the heavy weight al pastors. If anyone has some hidden gems in the DF I would appreciate it. Hey 99 do not forget to order sin guacamole.at ATS I have no clue why they do that, and yes I should have gone for the asada to begin with.

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