Food trucks have been around for years, first gaining popularity in New York City, and recently expanding to cities throughout the United States. Los Angeles adopted this mobile food distribution trend years ago with the advent of the taco truck and has expanded the industry so much in recent years that the city has a whole website devoted to tracking down the hundreds of trailers dishing out tasty ethnic cuisine. Having resided in Los Angeles for five years of my life, I have acquired a love of food trucks, carts, and really, any food distributor on wheels.
In recent years, they’ve expanded to New Orleans, but with some challenges. The city has created a variety of rules and regulations that food trucks must abide by, including one that penalizes truck owners with a $500 fine if found within 600 feet of any restaurant or school during business hours. These rules and regulations have been too much for some vendors to handle, forcing many to quit and others to convert to permanent locations, such as the Frenchmen Taco Truck, which is now conveniently located in Café Negril on Frenchmen Street. Still called “Taco Truck” in its current truck-less state, this late-night spot serves up the most authentic Mexican food I’ve had in Orleans Parish, and I’m from near the border, so I know authentic tacos when I eat them. As tasty as their tacos and quesadillas are, nothing compares to the $6 gargantuan burritos. Do yourself a favor and order the pork, with lots of spicy green hot sauce! You won’t regret it.
Unfortunately, these oppressive rules have made food trucks difficult to find. Some publicize their whereabouts via Twitter, and that’s how I found Taceaux Loceaux on a hungry Friday night at the Kingpin, an unassuming Uptown bar right off of Prytania. I had heard incredible reviews for weeks about these tacos, but naturally took all the fanfare with a grain of salt. Once I read their menu, though, I knew we spoke the same language.
Their tacos are more ethnically diverse than a meeting of the United Nations. Like Asian food? Try the “Seoul Man” Korean-style bulgogi chicken and sriracha aioli taco. More into some good, old-fashioned, smothered, southern barbecue? Stick with their “Kermit’s BBQ” sweet and spicy pork and mango salsa taco or the “Messin’ with Texas” brisket version, not to mention “Carnital Knowledge,” the classic slow-cooked pork taco. Miss grandma’s home cooking? The andouille-filled “AIEEE!” will take you back to the good old days. They even have vegan-friendly options and a taco named “The Notorious P.I.G.”
These tacos really will drive you loco. I was craving my “Kermit’s BBQ” taco for weeks after I first got my hands around one of those babies, but after looking at the menu again the “Seoul Man” is looking mighty fine. Success with Taceaux Loceaux has me now in search of other food trucks, including Fork in the Road, We Eat the Street, and Boo Koo BBQ.