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Looking for a Big, Delicious Taco in Pasadena

katkoupai Jun 4, 2011 12:00 PM

Hi, I'm on a taco hunt again. I'm looking for a big taco stuffed with meat, lettuce, sour cream, cheese, the works. Not looking for a small carne asada taco, but looking for more of a super taco that is not from a fast food chain (e.g., not Del Taco or Taco Bell). Any taco trucks or dives in Pasadena where I can get one? Fresh salsa? Maybe I should hit Rosarito. Thanks in advance for your help.

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Rosarito #2
720 N Lake Ave, Pasadena, CA 91104

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  1. ipsedixit RE: katkoupai Jun 4, 2011 12:15 PM

    Do you mean burrito? I've never known any place that "stuffs" a taco, even an American hard-shelled one.

    3 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit
      katkoupai RE: ipsedixit Jun 4, 2011 05:39 PM

      Lol. Maybe, I do mean a burrito. There's a place in Boyle Heights that makes tacos this way. Yes, they are hard shelled. Tops also does it, but I'm craving something other than Tops.

      1. re: katkoupai
        r
        reality check RE: katkoupai Jun 4, 2011 06:23 PM

        I took your use of "stuffed" as in packed a taco full of meat cheese etc. Not sure Pasadena has anything like that, though.

        1. re: reality check
          katkoupai RE: reality check Jun 4, 2011 10:13 PM

          reality check, that's exactly what I meant. I meant a taco that has more than meat, onions and cilantro, and that is packed with a lot of ingredients, including meat, lettuce, cheese and possibly sour cream and salsa. :)

    2. h
      happybaker RE: katkoupai Jun 4, 2011 12:56 PM

      Do you mean a hard shell taco?

      1 Reply
      1. re: happybaker
        katkoupai RE: happybaker Jun 4, 2011 05:39 PM

        Either hard shell or soft shell.

      2. j
        Jack Flash RE: katkoupai Jun 4, 2011 04:26 PM

        If you mean a simple hard shell Gringomex taco (I would never describe a taco as stuffed; it's just not possible to really stuff anything that small), Burrito Express on Washington between Hill & Allen is your spot.

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        Burrito Express
        1597 E Washington Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91104

        9 Replies
        1. re: Jack Flash
          katkoupai RE: Jack Flash Jun 4, 2011 05:40 PM

          Ok, thank you!

          1. re: katkoupai
            h
            happybaker RE: katkoupai Jun 4, 2011 07:49 PM

            I will also add - Burrito Express has WONDERFUL salsa's and refried beans. We'd go back just for the beans.

            Not a fancy place, but a Tasty place.

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            Burrito Express
            1597 E Washington Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91104

            1. re: happybaker
              katkoupai RE: happybaker Jun 4, 2011 09:58 PM

              Burrito Express is where I went. Thank you Jack Flash and happybaker. I got two tacos for about $3.25. The hard shell one with beef was better than the carne asada soft taco. Hit the spot. I will continue my search, so I appreciate any and all suggestions. :)

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              Burrito Express
              1597 E Washington Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91104

               
              1. re: katkoupai
                WildSwede RE: katkoupai Jun 6, 2011 05:03 PM

                Do they have a salsa bar? Thanks!

                1. re: WildSwede
                  h
                  happybaker RE: WildSwede Jun 6, 2011 08:51 PM

                  No salsa bar in the am (when I went). But you can tell them what kinds of salsa you like and they will give you a cup of it.

                  Although I will say, in a huge diversion, that I found a taco place in Santa Barbara with a salsa bar that took my breath away. STELLAR.

                2. re: katkoupai
                  Peripatetic RE: katkoupai Jun 10, 2011 03:01 AM

                  I tried the had-shell taco with beef at Burrito Express and it wasn't bad. The hot sauce was very good (I've had it with their burritos). You were probably happy they had sour cream available, too. On the whole I prefer Rick's -- maybe it's just habit, but I prefer ground beef to shredded beef in that style of taco. If the shredded beef had been excellent, that might have turned it around for me, but it was merely good.

                  1. re: Peripatetic
                    WildSwede RE: Peripatetic Jun 10, 2011 09:57 AM

                    I, too, prefer ground beef hard tacos. Saying that, I stopped at Pepe's on Rosemead (a block north of Las Tunas) last night and ordered (my standard) taquitos with guac and a hard taco, regular (no guac). The taquitos are one of my most favorite things there - especially with a good dousing of either of their three hot sauces (green, habanero, red). The taco, while not big, is in a homemade shell with shredded beef, cheese and tomatoes (cannot remember if it had lettuce on it). It is very good - their shredded beef is nicely seasoned and the hot sauces take it to the next level. I also got a bean and cheese burrito to go (with ranchera sauce on the side) and since I had never ordered one of them before, when I got home I had to dip my finger into the beans to see how they were. Well, they were fabulous! Creamy deliciousness! Of course, I forgot to bring it to work with me for lunch, so now I will be sitting here dreaming about it all day! I was looking at the order screen while waiting and noticed that almost every order had carne asada burritos on it. I have never had it, but would guess it is good.

                    http://theoriginalpepes.com/index.html

                    1. re: WildSwede
                      katkoupai RE: WildSwede Jun 10, 2011 11:14 AM

                      Pepe's is so good! I like the one on Rosemead. Their tostadas are piles high, like a small hill or mountain. :-)

                      1. re: WildSwede
                        e
                        Ernie RE: WildSwede Jun 10, 2011 11:19 AM

                        I like Pepe's too for their taquitos, bean & cheese burritos, nachos and tostadas but do not care for their carne asada. Their chile verde with pork is a much better choice

            2. Peripatetic RE: katkoupai Jun 4, 2011 07:01 PM

              Your stated preference for sour cream and cheese suggests you're looking for "gringo-style" tacos. If so, you might like the tacos at Rick's Drive-In at Walnut and El Molino. I don't remember if they have sour cream available (it doesn't come standard). Also the tacos aren't particularly large. But they are my favorite gringo tacos in Pasadena. In Arcadia, Taco Lita and Taco Treat also have good gringo tacos.

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              Rick's Drive-In
              680 E Walnut St, Pasadena, CA 91101

              8 Replies
              1. re: Peripatetic
                katkoupai RE: Peripatetic Jun 4, 2011 09:51 PM

                Thank you! :)

                1. re: Peripatetic
                  WildSwede RE: Peripatetic Jun 6, 2011 05:01 PM

                  Agree on all 3 counts! Be sure to get some of the delicious hot sauce at Rick's. I do not think they have sour cream, but then again, I have never asked. Taco Lita and Taco Treat are my faves, too, with TT edging out TL because of their hot sauce! Happy munching!

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                  Taco Lita
                  120 E Duarte Rd, Arcadia, CA 91006

                  1. re: WildSwede
                    katkoupai RE: WildSwede Jun 6, 2011 06:47 PM

                    Thanks, I will try to check some of these out this week: Taco Lita and Taco Treat and Rick's. :)

                    lso, it looks like Rosarito on Lake is now a place called Sausalito or something. Don't know what happened.

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                    Taco Lita
                    120 E Duarte Rd, Arcadia, CA 91006

                    1. re: katkoupai
                      r
                      reality check RE: katkoupai Jun 6, 2011 08:07 PM

                      Taco Lita's tacos do not have sour cream on them, but they are great. Wed & Fri they have a five taco special and yes, like WS said, load up on the Taco Lita sauce.

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                      Taco Lita
                      120 E Duarte Rd, Arcadia, CA 91006

                      1. re: reality check
                        WildSwede RE: reality check Jun 7, 2011 12:28 PM

                        I was actually touting the sauce from Taco Treat. I drink it! ;-) But TL's sauce is good, too. Also at Taco Treat they have specials, I think Tues and Sundays, but think it is only for some of their burritos and tostadas. I love their bean and cheese burrito (deep fried). Their taquitos are also very good with a big glob of quac! YUM!

                        1. re: WildSwede
                          r
                          reality check RE: WildSwede Jun 7, 2011 12:36 PM

                          I much prefer Taco Lita to Taco Treat, but to each his or her own.

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                          Taco Lita
                          120 E Duarte Rd, Arcadia, CA 91006

                  2. re: Peripatetic
                    katkoupai RE: Peripatetic Jun 8, 2011 08:00 AM

                    We made a late night stop at Rick's after the NBA Playoffs. It stays open until midnight, apparently. Although the food hit the spot at the time, I feel like the hard shell taco I had at Burrito Express was tastier. The Burrito Express taco has shredded beef, while the Rick's taco had ground beef. Also, I liked the salsa and the cheese at Burrito Express better.

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                    Burrito Express
                    1597 E Washington Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91104

                    1. re: katkoupai
                      WildSwede RE: katkoupai Jun 9, 2011 02:49 PM

                      FWIW, Taco Lita and Taco Treat use ground beef.

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                      Taco Lita
                      120 E Duarte Rd, Arcadia, CA 91006

                  3. r
                    RoxyGrl RE: katkoupai Jun 4, 2011 11:06 PM

                    You might want to give Pepper's in Arcadia a try. You can check out the pics on their Yelp page and see if it's what you're looking for

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                    Pepper's Mexican Grill & Cantania
                    181 Colorado Pl, Arcadia, CA 91007

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: RoxyGrl
                      katkoupai RE: RoxyGrl Jun 5, 2011 01:06 PM

                      Thanks, just drove by it the other day and was wondering if it was good. :)

                      1. re: katkoupai
                        j
                        jackattack RE: katkoupai Jun 7, 2011 05:49 PM

                        Puebla Tacos, yummy yummy, muy rico

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                        Puebla Tacos
                        700 N Lake Ave, Pasadena, CA 91104

                      2. re: RoxyGrl
                        katkoupai RE: RoxyGrl Jun 10, 2011 11:22 AM

                        This is a pic of one taco at Peppers. It's the size of three tacos. It was definitely filling. Now that's stuffed!

                         
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