99 Essential Restaurants 2014

Guerrilla Tacos

photo by Garrett Snyder

If the thought of having a fine taco alongside a fine cappuccino has never occurred to you, surely it will now: Wes Avila and Tanya Mueller usually park their Guerrilla Tacos truck curbside outside Handsome Coffee Roasters in downtown’s Arts District or Cognoscenti Coffee’s Culver City shop. After stints in various fine-dining establishments in the city, including Church and State and Le Comptoir, Avila left behind those whites for this blue taco truck, where the emphasis is not so much farm-to-table as it is farm-to-truck. Thus it’s not a surprise that the market-driven menu will change with the season; given Avila’s talents, it’s perhaps not a surprise, either, that no matter what the ingredients, his tacos are consistently some of the most excellent in the city. Recently, you could have had a taco with charred octopus, pistachios, Cara Cara oranges and a fiery arbol chile, or one with roasted romanesco, purple cauliflower, Medjool dates and almond chili. Occasionally, there will be terrific treats on the menu like a tostada topped with uni and kombu dashi. This is fine dining, indeed.

-- Tien Nguyen