A “taquiza” is an open taco bar. It is the time-honored tradition of hiring a taquería to show up to your party—be it a birthday, wedding, or quinceañera—to set up shop and serve all your guests as many piping hot tacos as they can eat. It is a beautiful service that makes any special gathering an unforgettable one and removes every single bit of stress having to do with feeding large amounts of guests—all at the same time.
Taquizas range according to your budget. If you need to save money, at its most stripped-down, a taco caterer may offer at least two meats, salsas, and packaged corn tortillas. If you need vegetarian options, the rice and beans that some taqueros may provide as an upgrade are always worth it. If you want to ball out and replicate that same sense of euphoria that you get after eating a plate of your favorite “street tacos,” there are some taquizas that offer full-on trompo al pastor operations with caramelized onions and handmade corn tortillas in your backyard. However, the best part of hiring a taquiza is that it gives your guest the freedom to eat exactly how they want.
In Los Angeles, there is an overwhelming amount of taquiza options to choose from, and this list is one of the most requested that L.A. TACO receives, so here is a list to help you celebrate your special event…with tacos. The rule of thumb is that almost every taco stand and Mexican restaurant in Los Angeles also offers catering and taquiza services…if you ask nicely. So if you have a favorite taquero who knows your regular order in your neighborhood, chances are they may be down to cater your event. Sonoratown, Guelaguetza, El Ruso, Tacos La Carreta, Tacos Don Cuco, for example, all offer catering options with tacos and more.
This list, however, features taquiza-only taquerías designed to exclusively serve in backyards, salons, and any other casual space in your home or venue, which are harder to find and come by.
This taquiza is operated out of La Princesita Tortillería & La Blanquita Carnicería in East Los Angeles. They stand out for their award-winning handmade corn tortillas made to order and for their guacamole that is not watered down, which they serve with flaky, crispy totopos (corn chips). They also offer al pastor from a trompo if you want to show off your taco life dedication to your guests. If you look closely at the L.A. episode of Ugly Delicious, you’ll see them in the background serving tacos to David Chang and his crew.
If you want to hire the most high-quality taquiza that stands out for the quality of its taco options, salsa, and tortillas, Soho Taco in Orange County is a serious contender for that title. With shrimp, mahi-mahi, esquites, ceviche, heirloom tomatoes, champurrado, and handmade corn tortillas, Soho Taco, takes no shortcuts in ensuring their customers have a unique taquiza experience. They are based out of O.C., but they serve the greater Los Angeles area.
Where there is an outstanding torta ahogada, a great taco is not far behind. A case in point is Tortas El Águila and their best-kept secret, Tacos El Águila, which is Miguel Lara’s taco catering side gig. For over 20 years, Lara has been serving tacos to L.A.’s taco-loving community. He offers asada, al pastor, and pollo, all grilled on a flat top and served by perhaps L.A.’s most charming tortero-by-day-and-taquero-by-night. For a little more, he also offers lengua (tender beef tongue) and papas con chorizo; both upgrades are incredibly worth it.
East L.A. BBQ Tacos
David “East L.A. Raider Dave” Marin is the main plug for DM-only smoked meat in East Los Angeles. He honed his craft for tender, juicy barbecue in the tailgates and booster club meetups of his beloved Raiders and had a recurring pop-up at Xelas a while back. His side hustle, though, has always been taquizas. His catering packages range from your straightforward asada and chicken to all the smoked meat tacos your BBQ-loving heart can handle. The latter bbq taco options is what this punk rock lifer excels in, so give him a call if the idea of brisket, tri-tip, smoked lengua, and peppery smoked beef cheek tacos sound like a good time to you.
Chef David Fuerte is unstoppable. After his successful opening of La Carnicería Wagyu, Fuerte is now applying his passion for Prime-grade beef and other high-quality meats to tortillas for his new concept, L.A. Taquería. The first location of this brick-and-mortar taquería is in Downey, but he’s already announced four other locations around greater L.A. County. Note: Once you taste Prime-grade beef in tacos, it’s incredibly hard to return to generic, conventional asada.
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