Tuesday, September 17, 2013

El Sabroso

Seattle is newly replete with food trucks. The new laws passed by the city in July 2011 made it much easier to be street food vendor in this town, and the payoff has been huge. At any lunchtime in most neighborhoods - and on most major corners - you can find trucks selling sushi, felafel, french toast, udon noodles, crepes, bibimbap - pretty much any street food from any corner of the globe.

For my two bucks, the best "taco trucks" are still taco trucks. Long the only street food vendors of any note in this town, the many Mexican families selling cheap tacos, burritos, tortas and tamales out of their converted panel vans are the people who have long since perfected this art form. And in this Dogg's humble opinion, El Sabroso on Beacon Hill remains the ne plus ultra of taco trucks. This family-owned business was founded by Daniel Perez Jimenez - born in Oaxaca and schooled in cooking in Mexico City. Arriving in the U.S. in 1999, Perez helped open the kitchen of Tango Tapas Restaurant in Seattle, moved to San Antonio for a stint, then came back to Seattle in 2006 to direct a kitchen on Capitol Hill and open his taco truck in his family's Beacon Hill neighborhood.

The menu at El Sabroso doesn't vary greatly from standard Mexican street fare - tortas, tacos, burriots and horchata - but the ingredients are always fresh, there is always seafood on the menu in addition to the usual meats, and the chef's special quesadilla "La Sabrosota," filled with bacon, sausage, ham, egg and cheese - is a masterpiece.

The truck itself is gorgeous as well, with a spray painted mural of Emiliano Zapata and the slogan "La Tierra es Para Quien la Trabaja" ("The land belongs to those who work it") painted high above the serving window.

El Sabroso can be found every day at the corner of Roberto Maestas Festival Street and 16th Ave. S., in front of El Centro de la Raza.

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