Guerrilla Tacos at Cognoscenti Coffee (Wed 9am-2pm)
6114 Washington Blvd
Culver City, CA 90232
Wes Avila is kind of like Batman of the taco world. When he’s not working as the sous chef for Le Comptoir (currently hosted at The Wine Vault in Glendale), he’s taking taco justice to the streets with the taco cart/stand-turned-truck Guerrilla Tacos. He doesn’t have any superpowers, but he does have an arsenal of quality gadgets (in this case, ingredients) to go along with his crime-fighting intelligence, honed from his experience at some of the finer kitchens around town. [update: I’ve been told that Chef Wes isn’t at Le Comptoir anymore – solely focusing on Guerrilla Tacos now]
Le Comptoir is known around town as a place where quality ingredients, especially vegetables, are allowed to shine, and that philosophy is ever so evident at Guerrilla Tacos. Farmers market vegetables, locally-sourced proteins, and each dish made to order – this is a one-man farm-to-table restaurant operating under a taqueria facade. They’re usually parked outside Handsome Coffee Roasters (Wednesdays 5-8pm, Fridays 9am-2pm, and Saturday & Sunday 9am-1pm), but they’re also outside Cognoscenti Coffee in Culver City on Wednesdays from 9am to 2pm – which is where I was able to try their offerings, as my office had moved to Culver City recently.
The fare at Guerrilla Tacos isn’t your standard taco truck food, nor is it traditional by any sense, but they are traditionally-inspired and jazzed up in ways beyond aesthetics. So far, I’ve only tried their breakfast items (seems like the only type of tacos/burritos offered at Culver City), and each of them have been excellent. Between my two visits, I was able to sample four of their tacos, two of their burritos, and a tamale (and no, my fat ass didn’t eat all of this in two meals). Of the four tacos, two centered around scrambled eggs, and two around fried eggs.
Neither of the scrambled egg tacos contained any meat, but the respective roasted green bean and Anaheim chili were just downright delicious. So were the spinach and charred broccoli that were part of the fried egg tacos – they might have been even better than the prosciutto and pancetta that they were paired with, an amazing feat in itself. All four tacos were fully-composed, with multiple components contributing to the construction, and dressed to the nines – these dolled-up ladies are ready to be taken home by the time they reach your hands. The tortilla does get a bit lost among all the hotness, but gets the job done as the designated driver. The tacos can be messy to eat though, as it’s kind of hard to get a good grip on these busty beauties, but I like it dirty anyways.
From what I’ve read, the burritos here are relatively new to the menu. The two offerings I tried were breakfast burritos that don’t stray too far from the traditional ones I’m familiar with from my growing boy days. In fact, the second one I had, with Cook Pigs Ranch sausage, potato, avocado, and tomato habanero chili, is pretty much a traditional one made with quality ingredients. The other one, however, with that same Cook Pigs Ranch sausage but in patty form, fluffy egg, and queso blanco, was like the most awesome sausage McMuffin in burrito form.
I also tried the duck tamale, but unfortunately the duck was on the dry side, and didn’t have that duck flavor I love. Still a decent tamale though. In fact, the only “bad” thing about Guerrilla Tacos is their prices (tacos are ~$5, and burritos are $10), but I think they’re actually quite fair, for the ingredients they’re using, and each item being made to order by Avila alone. It’s not exactly buying 10 tacos from Leo’s after a night of drinking, but you’ll feel much better about yourself after eating these sexy tacos.
I’ve seen and read about their more creative and fancy offerings served at Handsome for lunch and dinner, and from the looks of it, they’re even better than the excellent breakfast fare I’ve sampled. So please Wes, let me try some of these dishes when you’re at Culver City one of these days. But for now, I’m more than happy continuing to try the creative, and more importantly, delicious breakfast tacos and burritos. Worth the ~4 mile drive from the office, that’s for sure.
|Mexican||Food Truck/Culver City||$||A-|