>> Tacos Sonora | Eat the World Los Angeles

Friday, 15 July 2022

Tacos Sonora

MÉXICO 🇲🇽
(SONORA)
The Saturday stand in front of a Poppy Avenue residence

COVID-19 UPDATE: The stand is set up in front of a private residence and all interactions take place outside. Staff are wearing masks, most customers are not.

You would probably never wander onto this one block long stretch of Poppy Avenue in Compton without the intention to do so, but if you happened upon it on a Saturday, the double-parked traffic and delicious smells of guisados would stop you in your tracks. The proprietor of this business has been in the game since 2014 in one form or another, but during the worst of the pandemic in December 2020 has transitioned to the current home setup.

Despite the name, the specialty of Tacos Sonora is now burritos, using guisados with Sonoran recipes stuffed into flour tortillas made as an order is placed. These are made one at a time on the plancha, as they take a good deal of attention and could be under or over-cooked very easily.

Making burritos every Saturday

Assortment of guisados

If there is a line of people before you, it could take a bit as this is definitely not fast food, but the atmosphere is shaded and jovial, with smiles on the faces of every patron that has eaten or is about to. You can get one of a couple aguas frescas, consomé de birria, and they even make quesobirria tacos because this is Los Angeles after all, but the focus of your trip here will be the six or so guisados offered each Saturday.

When transferred from the grill to the guisados station, a small slick of beans will be applied to each hot tortilla, still dusty to the touch. Some options will rotate week to week, but on a recent visit the options were carne con nopales, puerco en molcajete, chicharrón, papa con chorizo, and birria de res. Sometimes you will find machaca or carne asada, always wonderful Sonoran staples.

Flour tortilla made for each burrito

The play here is of course to bring at least one friend and order one of each they have. Each burrito ($4, below) may not look like a ton of food, but with the soft flour tortilla, beans, and good portion of guisado in each, it quickly fills you up. They make both red and green salsas which you should absolutely take with you for some options as both are really nice even if they guisados do not require them.

There is a growing number of tables and umbrellas and shade structures and the family encourages people to sit down and eat their burritos immediately when they are at their best. As filled customers leave they yell things like "hasta la semana que viene," promising to be back next week for another round.

Six burritos uno cada uno

Inside a burrito de carne con nopales

The areas of Compton and Paramount are of course well known for Sinaloan restaurants, but a growing number of Sonoran people are putting forward a slightly more rare food in Los Angeles. Sonora dogs have been around forever of course, but there is so much more to the northern cuisine which has tended to stay in Arizona when crossing the border.

During a brief conversation while waiting for an order, it was stated that demand was getting to a point where the stand might open on a second day each week. That information will be updated when it changes, but for now plan your burrito excursions for Saturdays starting at 09:00.

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