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Apr 24, 2006 04:47 PM

Tacos in Pasadena/SGV valley

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I'm looking for a great authentic mexican Tacos in the Pasadena / SGV Valley area. If possible, it's a restaurant, not a taco truck bcos my wife does not find the idea of taco truck amusing; though i did. Any recommendations is appreciated. Thank You

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  1. Not sure what part of SGV you are in, but there are King Taco locations in El Monte and Baldwin Park. They have good al pastor, and while not a true restaurant with servers, it is enclosed with seats to feast on your tacos

    4 Replies
    1. re: Macdonald

      There's a closer King Taco on Arroyo Parkway just north of Fair Oaks in Pasadena.

      1. re: Eiji

        I can't recommend the Pasadena King Taco because it is the poorest of the chain and not enough turnover to keep things at their freshest.

        1. re: Macdonald

          Plus I got extremely food poisoned there 4 years ago. I mean really food poisoning where the Health Department is required to interview you - not just an upset stomach.
          Stay Away!

          1. re: Oro3030

            plus theyre open til 3 on weekends but if you're parked on the streets at 2 YOU WILL GET TICKETED. The ticket squad comes out in force out in oldtown ( i seriously saw 10-15 meter maids handing out tickets)

    2. In Azusa, I like Taco Taco on Foothill, east of Azusa Ave., for Al Pastor, Sesos, Cabeza, and Carne Asada. Just about 2 blocks east is Taco King (not to be confused with King Taco) for Tripas. Both are around the level of fast food in terms of ambience.

      If you're looking for a higher level of service, i.e. sit down, waiters, & margaritas, Rudy's in Monrovia is pretty good but he tends to shy away from the more "exotic" ingredients though you can get some good lengua there. On the corner of Myrtle and Colorado. One block east, on the corner of Ivy and Colorado is Enrique's for really good tamales. Their tacos and chile rellenos are also good but the enchiladas are better at Rudy's. I don't care for La Adelita , in the middle of the block, at all.

      1 Reply
      1. re: heckonwheels

        FWIW, Rudy's sells "more exotic" tacos at their stand outside the restaurant on Friday nights at the Monrovia street fair. I prefer the tacos from the stand to the restaurant most of the time.

      2. For sit-down you might try Tonny's, on Orange Grove just off North Lake Ave. Haven't tried their tacos yet, but they have pretty much all of the hardcore meats on the menu, and everything else we've had there (except for the overcooked chips and curiously bland salsa) is really good.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Will Owen

          Ditto the Tonny's rec.

          1. re: Will Owen

            I ordered their Al Pastor and Carne Asada tacos (along with their fantastic Posole) and was very underwhelmed by their Al Pastor. Their Carne Asada was passable, but I would not order their Al Pastor again. Service is wonderful and other items are very good, though.
            La Estrella is in a small cheesy place stripmall on Orange Grove and has indoor seating on hard plastic tables with the benches attached (sounds wonderful, huh?). But the food is really good. You order at the counter and they tell you when your food is done.
            Their Fair Oaks location now has outdoor patio seating (it is basically a small house with tables out front, but they serve some of the best al pastor and carne asada, not to mention their fish tacos and ceviche. I would give them a try as well). It is my favorite since Las Ruinas closed down for al pastor.

            1. re: Will Owen

              Tonny's is far and away your best option for sit down outside of Highland Park.
              The Al Pastor is weak but the carnitas, asada and pollo are fantastic. Plus they have homemade tortillas and did I mention the tacos are $0.90?
              PLus they have great versions of chiles rellenos and chile verde.

            2. El Jacal is a must try. A very nice clean little place with Maybe 50 to 60 seats inside. Asada, fish and several types of shrimp tacos. Breakfast and many lunch / dinner plates. They will try hard to make you happy. In fact several friends and I will be having a sampler platter of shrimp and asada on Thursday this week. It is not on the menu but I talked to the owner today during lunch and he said, “Sure, any thing you want.” Very fresh good food.

              El Jacal (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Mexican and Sea food – Must try everything at this palce)
              13414 Ramona Blvd
              Baldwin Park, CA 91706-3902
              (626) 813-4419
              From the 605 – Go Maybe 8 blocks East on the right. .


              1. El Taco Nazo for Fish Taco's/Burrtios

                2 locations 1 on garvey just east of rosemead. ( It moved to this new facny looking place on the south side of the street used to be in a hole in the wall right across the street)

                2nd is off Azusa ave just north of the 210.

                IMo some of the best fish tacos i've had though they look like they've gone a little more commercial lately ( catering trucks and nicer, chain/looking restaurants)

                Also, if you're gonna go to a La Estrella go to the one on Foothill. You can check he boards but apparently the owners divorced and the husband got the foothill location while the wife got the other 2 and started experimenting with the menu at those 2 locations. Concenus on the boards is the one on foothill has stayed truer and has better food.

                Tonny's is good too . Love getting the fresh juice with my food too.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Mando

                  great recs. La Estrella's red is as good as King Taco's IMO.