>> Mariscos Madrigal | Eat the World Los Angeles

Wednesday 10 March 2021

Mariscos Madrigal

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COVID-19 UPDATE: This food truck is operating as usual, there is no on-site dining or salsa bar, everything is included in your to go bag.

In an area that seemingly has multiple food trucks and stands on each block, one recent new entry stood out from the rest because it offered top billing to its empanadas. This is something you do not find from Mexican chefs as often as tacos, tortas, and the wide array of antojitos always so delicious on the streets of East Los Angeles and everywhere else in the city. Since January of 2020, Mariscos Madrigal has been trying to change that.

The anthropomorphic smiling empanada on the side was enough for a u-turn back in November and another recent visit. For now you can find the truck here in front of the Solanda Outlet Foods Thursday-Monday after 3pm, and because this is Olympic, right across the street from another mariscos truck.

Those fried empanadas ($2 each, above) are stuffed with prawn and cheese, but possibly the best reason to get them is for the tasty salsas they come with, especially the chipotle crema. Eat them fresh from the truck or bake them for a while back at home, as they are best when they almost burn the top of your mouth. Instagrammers will be happy about the long cheese pull possible from these when fresh.

The star of the truck though might just be the tacos al gobernador ($4 each, below). These have similar ingredients but with the addition of some crunchy fresh veggies and a crispy fried tortilla, they are delicious. Squirt in some lime and a drop or two of their extra spicy dark salsa on the left.

This relatively new taco's history goes back only to the early 90's, named for the governor in Sinaloa who they were first prepared for. Since they have spread in popularity through Sinaloa and Baja, but can now be found just about anywhere that has access to the fresh shrimp of the Pacific.

You can find them in many places in Los Angeles but they exist without universal name recognition. If there is any food that seems primed to go on a Nashville hot chicken or birria de res red taco-type popularity spike, tacos al gobernador are ready. They are prepared quickly, easy to eat with your hands, full of cheese, and the camera loves them.

A more recent visit to the truck enjoyed more of those crispy tacos but also took in the aguachile negro ($7.50, above). The aguachile verde was originally ordered, but the proprietor asked if this one, a new creation on their menu, might be desired instead. Not quite black, but more of a deep reddish-brown, the aguachile is spicy and very good.

The deep colors and heat come from a combination of chiles and other ingredients that are closely guarded. For to go orders, they pack up two tostadas for you and the fresh shrimp aguachile is in a separate container. It ends up being more than enough to make two servings, and quite a deal using very good ingredients.

The taco de marlin ($4, above) is prepared and priced the same as the gobernador, with cheese and a crispy shell. On future visits, the truck is also preparing chicharrรณn de pargo, small hunks of snapper deep fried and crisp, as well as fried fish tacos more Baja-style, and even big bags of Cajun seasoned shrimp.

Come get it all before their lines start to resemble some of the mariscos trucks further west on Olympic.


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