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Seafood

These Nayarit-Style, Ceviche-Stuffed ‘MarisCocos’ in Compton Taste Just As Good As They Do On the Beach

Each young coconut is macheted to order and imported from Colima. The tender meat is mixed in with the ceviche and its refreshing coconut water is served in a plastic bag. They are about the size of basketball and weigh five pounds—at least. It's officially summertime in Los Angeles!

Mariscoco. Photo by Javier Cabral for L.A. TACO.

Are you up for a swim in a pool of plump shrimp, springy callo de hacha, bouncy octopus, and enough tender young coconut meat to be up to your nose in ceviche? Then dive right into Mr.Cocos75’s stand on Atlantic Avenue, specializing in Tecuala-style mariscocos that taste just as insanely delicious and refreshing as they do when eating on the beach in Mexico…but in the middle of Compton (or the Inland Empire, which is home to their second location). 

The stand, which consists of an EZ-up tent and two plastic tables propped on the curb next to a park that opened, is easy to miss since there are at least a dozen other street food vendors and trucks located at this congested intersection. It’s been open since 2020 but went viral last year thanks to a post by beloved paisa influencer Chuy Patabionica. Since then, it has grown a cult following of working-class locals and seafood-obsessed families who sell the stand out nearly every day it opens. Recently, Mr. Biggs Menu posted him as well. 

The street food stand is the first in L.A. to specialize in mariscocos, which is paradise in food form: a fresh macheted tender young coconut that is hollowed out and stuffed with an ungodly amount of fresh seafood and its own tender young coconut meat, mixed in a secret sauce made of a bit of clamato, Maggi, Worcestershire, and a handful of Mexican hot sauces. The resulting coconut is stuffed with so much seafood that it’s inevitable to have some fallen crustacean soldiers as you carry it to the lone folding table beside the stand. The mariscoco is as big as a basketball and weighs five pounds—at least. 

De Dios is confident in his sazón, telling all of his new customers, “If you don’t like it, you don’t pay.” He tells L.A. TACO that to this day, no one has taken him up on that because every single customer leaves happy. He also has a pancake stand named Mrs.sweetpancakes2020 as a side hustle. 

When asked what inspired the marisquero behind the stand, Armando de Dios, to specialize in this intensely regional variation of essentially a ceviche and coctel hybrid, he answers: “Myself!” Between both of De Dios’s stands in Compton and the Inland Empire, his stands go through 500 coconuts a day. He also shares that he imports every ingredient for his mariscocos from Mexico. The coconuts are from Colima, which is Mexico’s coconut capital. The shrimp, octopus, and callos de hacha are sourced from the Mexican-facing Pacific ocean. Even the baked puffy tostadas are imported from Nayarit, which adds another deep level of authenticity to this mariscoco (most other seafood stands and restaurants use the same L.A.-based tostadas, adding a degree of homogeneous flavor to Mexican seafood here.) 

Mr.Cocos even imports the type of tostadas they serve from Nayarit. Photo by Javier Cabral for L.A. TACO.
Mariscoco
The mariscocos have so much seafood that they weigh around five pounds in total. Photo by Javier Cabral for L.A. TACO.

De Dios is confident in his sazón, telling all of his new customers, “If you don’t like it, you don’t pay.” He tells L.A. TACO that to this day, no one has taken him up on that because every single customer leaves happy. He also has a pancake stand named "Mrs.sweetpancakes2020" as a side hustle. 

Each coconut ranges from $15 for just the young coconut meat and clamato, and the price jumps to $50 for one brimming shrimp, callo de hacha, and octopus. The $50 one easily feeds two people. Every coconut comes with fresh coconut water, served in a plastic bag. Coconut diehards will roll their eyes back in euphoric coconutty bliss at the first sip of De Dios’s coconut horchata, too. It’s rich and refreshing at the same time, made by blending fresh coconut meat, rice, cinnamon, and sweetened condensed milk. 

The cocomarisquero of few words sells out often, so always check on the stand’s Instagram account for availability before busting this coconut mission.

Horchata de coco.
Horchata de coco at Mr.Cocos. Photo by Javier Cabral for L.A. TACO.

15116 S Atlantic Ave. Compton, CA

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