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Bacon Conchas Have Arrived in Los Angeles, a First of Its Kind

3:06 PM PDT on August 21, 2019

[dropcap size=big]I[/dropcap]n the age of concha burgers, it was only a matter of time until it was surpassed with something inherently smokier and more functional than a sliced-standard concha merely stuffed with a burger patty.  

Behold La Monarca Bakery’s bacon concha: a concha layered with a bacon bit-laced version of the traditional streusel cookie crust topping that forms the seashell-like of its namesake design. (In Spanish, this streusel cookie crust is called pasta.) 

The Mexican-owned panaderia quietly launched the sweet and savory concha at all 12 of their locations around Los Angeles County a month ago, but it was brought to the TACO’s attention last week by our own El Random Hero, Erick Huerta, who tried it first. According to his experienced pan dulce palate, “it tastes exactly how you think it would taste.” 

Photo by Erick Huerta

“I like them as a novelty, on par with bacon donuts. It isn't something I'd get all the time, but I'd grab one or two along with all the other bread I'm getting,“ Huerta says. Although he does wish the conchas would have more bacon in it to have the bacon flavor even more pronounced. “The ones I had only had three to four pieces of bacon on it, but maybe because they were mini conchas.” 

La Monarca’s bacon concha adds to their extensive concha repertoire, including variations like their “Mexican Wedding Cookie” inspired butter walnut concha, cinnamon concha, agave conchas, Mexican hot chocolate conchas, and many limited-run themed conchas that are Dodger blue or red, white, and green for Cinco de Mayo. 

“We always try to innovate new ways of working with conchas since we are a Mexican bakery and we are really proud of conchas,” Alfredo Livas, La Monarca’s co-owner tells L.A. Taco. “It’s been going great, people are really liking it.” The brioche-like dough itself has no bacon in it, just the crunchy pasta topping. And yes, L.A. Taco confirmed that La Monarca is using real bacon and real butter for it. 

Unlike a concha burger, which the TACO team agrees can come off as more of a gimmick stunt food than an actual craveable food item, the bacon concha seems to actually serve a purpose for those who prefer savory over sweet while eating bread. 

“If you’re into our bacon concha, keep an eye out on other flavors we are playing with,” Livas says. La Monarca says the odds of this concha becoming a regular variation offering at their stores is “looking very good.” With cobija and chill season around the corner and summer fading fast, L.A. Taco hopes so. 

As Livas says, “it’s L.A., everyone loves conchas.”

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