Streetgourmetla.... or? Anyone been to that UMAMI BURGER-adjacent taco bar?
It's called Candela Taco Bar. A work colleague has invited me out.
Yelp loves it, but Yelp loves everything.
Any reports from dedicated & knowledgeable Mexican food hounds greatly appreciated.
OK, responding to my own thread. Just returned. On the surface, this is clearly a place which seems to cater to a clientele less enamored with real tacos and more interested in the strength of the margaritas.
My hopes were dim.
The menu has a quite a decent selection of tacos, including baja style fish, pork colorado, and lengua(!). Prices varied but all hovered at about the $2 per taco price point (a steal for a place with more ambiance and style than the typical place serving lengua tacos) and on Weds it's $1 taco happy hour. Taco truck prices at a stylish restaurant sounds too good to be true... something's gotta give.
The tacos came.... I was pleasantly surprised. These appeared to be real tacos. Small, double corn tortillas with a scoop of filling, garnished appropriately with onion and cilantro, etc. I expressed my delight and surprise to my non-Chowhoundly Lebanese counterpart, who was amused by the fact that her initial perception of the tacos is that they were embarassingly small. Expectations are a funny thing.
Moving on to flavor... the fish taco was ok. The fish was flavorful but not crispy, and the taco was overloaded with a pink mayo sauce that was slightly sweet. Tasty, but a little odd. Best Tacos in Ensenada doesn't have to worry.
Pork Colorado was surprisingly good. Overstewed, dry meat is the potential problem here, but the pork was very tender, in a mildly spicy deep red sauce. Really tasty.
And the surprise of the night was the lengua. Was not expecting this to be good... after all, Miracle Mile tongue tacos that aren't coming out of a lonchero... all signs point to GET OUT NOW. I'm glad I didn't. The tongue meat was SHOCKINGLY tender, without the slightest hint of gamy tonguiness. Just soft, lovely, delicious meat that melted away on my, er, tongue. Bear in mind that this could have been unappealingly soft.... but it was not. It had just the right amount of tooth spring so that it didn't dissolve into a kind of meat jelly (which would be the real danger here). It was really, REALLY nice.
Oh, and the margs... fine. I'm not a big margarita drinker. 2 for 1 during 4-7 happy hour. $9 each. Ouch. (I'll stick with the tacos). 2 for 1 well drinks also.
Get the tongue!
Candela Taco Bar & Lounge
831 South La Brea Avenue (between Wilshire and Olympic)
Los Angeles, CA 90036-4809
re: Mr Taster
re: Mr Taster
I find that Candela on Wednesday is probably one of the best deals in the area. The chile colorado and tacos al pastor have always been solidly above average and I always order about 4-5 tacos. My only gripe with a Wednesday is that because of the tile flooring the place is shockingly loud. To the point where I really feel like I am shouting at the top of my lungs........ I believe the restaurant is related to the club next door that features Salsa and Ranchera music next door and leads to the authenticity factor....... A real find, and a great meet up spot.