March 06, 2020
We went to this place because we were in DTLA for a “Women in Cannabis” event where I was most definitely not the only male in attendance and found ourselves searching for great tacos for obvious reasons. Although we weren’t at a cannabis consumption event, it was apropos to conclude the event with great tacos and my favorite type of hand roll.
Tacos 1986 isn’t the type of place to bring a first date. It’s the type of place to drop in with your friends if you find yourself downtown craving authentic street tacos, or “TJ Style Tacos” as they call them. Now that I’ve been there, however, I’d definitely travel for these babies. Everything, from the tortillas to the horchatas and Mexican Cokes, feels authentic about this place. Nevermind the fact there are no chairs and when we arrived on a Tuesday evening it was completely empty, so we stood and enjoyed various versions of tacos, mulitas and vampiros. The sheer enthusiasm on our faces as we tackled the first round of tacos drew in another 10 to 15 people while we ate. I particularly loved the Adobada Mulitas and the Asada Vampiros. My sister had a classic Chicken Quesadilla which looked delicious, but I thought I’d have to make it back there to try a bite since she made it disappear so quickly.
A taco vampiro is a taco in a griddled tortilla that’s made to be crunchy (no, not Taco Bell-esque), but crunchier than your classic street taco and filled with tomatoes, onions, cilantro and topped with any of their delicious sauces. I chose the Salsa Macha because it was dark and mysterious looking, made with dried chilies, garlic and typically some type of nut like almonds or pumpkin seeds to round it out. The salsa macha added unique flavor to the taco vampiro and had us running back up to the counter to order another round of mulitas, vampiros and quesadillas (this time I got a bite.) You really cannot go wrong with anything on their simple menu and the service from the guys on the line was super friendly, approachable and completely understanding of our relatively novice TJ taco knowledge.
This place is a phenomenal little taco spot in DTLA and I can’t wait to make the trek back or just have them come cater a Saturday afternoon in Douglas park and get some really solid wines going to pair with them. Tacos and wine. I like the sound of that. Shoot us a note, join the email list and better yet our wine club and we’ll make sure to you get involved.