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May 15, 2013 07:30 PM

Taco truck/caterer w/ al pastor on a spit?

Ok, so my fiancee and I are in the very early stages of planning our wedding (just got engaged Fri!), and she is starting to get overwhelmed, and I figured I'd come to CH for help. We live in Chicago, but her family is all in CA (mostly Sonoma-ish) and a decent amount of our friends are in the Bay (we used to live in the Bay). We're thinking of possibly doing a wedding in the Bay Area since almost every Chicago venue has caterer restrictions, and it would cut down travel for a number of our guests. Anyways...

We want to have a taco stand at the reception with an al pastor spit (and ideally a taquero manning it). I've done some research (El Tonayense and El Ojo de Agua), but I've been out of the Bay for so long, that I wanted to get some direct help. Is there a taco truck/caterer/restaurant that does delicious al pastor from the spit? I remember the Bay lacking somewhat in the taco department... If we can't find one, our backup would be great BBQ.

Lastly, bonus points for a great venue with an outdoor space that allows outside catering - I've started to do the research (and like Sequioa Lodge and a couple other ebparks places, but fiancee nixed them saying they remind her of community centers where she did girl scouts) but figured I'd see if what we wanted food-wise was possible. (almost every wedding I've been to has had the same bland catered food and we want to avoid that - plus we love tacos!)

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  1. remembered a taco truck near high (not high) & international that had a spit. forgot the name. will grab name next time i see them.

    yep. Tacos El Gordo sounds right. not a taco truck. looks like a mobile van.

    2 Replies
    1. re: shanghaikid

      Tacos El Gordo?

      42nd & International, a block from High. Excellent al pastor on a spit.

      Haven't been in awhile.

      They're in an auto shop parking lot so I think open just weekends and evenings, iirc.

      1. re: shanghaikid

        Ha, Tacos el Gordo used to be my favorite taco in the Bay, and was going to be my first choice to look into (though not sure they could or would do a wedding).

      2. IIRC, Tacos Los Primos has a spit on their truck. They;re located in Richmond on 23rd nr Barrett

        1. I was at a wedding recently at the Sailboat House at Lake Merritt. It has a nice deck, a very large main room with a small kitchen where the "caterers" were from a taco truck (not fabulous food, but they made it work - I think the budget was tiny); maybe a truck with an al pastor spit could park in the lot/boat launch area under the deck. Bonus: it was where the Venice-style gondolas dock (though they weren't there). Negative: the groom's parents, from out of town, left luggage/laptop, etc. visible in their car and it was all stolen.

          In Sonoma (Glen Ellen), how about the picnic area outside the cottage at the Jack London State Park, with catering by El Molino Central? Though there are likely less pricey Mexican catering choices in that area, and probably one with a spit, too.

          1 Reply
          1. re: foodeye

            I love Jack London SP and it's literally walking distance from the bride-to-be's parents house. Though I don't know if she would go for it, she distinctly said "I don't want to have a picnic".

            Thanks all for the suggestions so far.

            PS - Sigmund Stern Grove looks nice!

          2. The very best outdoor wedding space in San Francisco is Sigmund Stern Grove. A wonderful, quiet place (and very inexpensive).
            Reservation form and rules, here:

            1. At the Cinco de Mayo festival in the Roseland district of Santa Rosa, there were no less than three trompos (al pastor spits) complete with pineapples among the food vendors.

              Mi Tierra Restaurant had two of them (see photo), and I gave it a try. Pretty good al pastor. And since it has a sit-down restaurant, it would be easy to go in and try for yourself.

              The other vendor with al pastor on a spit was strictly a caterer. I didn't get the exact name, but it was something like J & R Tacos.