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Taco News Round-Up: Hero Mom Uses ‘Taco Tactics’, La Palma on Fairfax, More

Welcome to the latest edition of the Taco News Roundup, a staple on L.A. Taco since 2007. This week we have several fascinating stories from all over the tacoverse, including exciting restaurant news in disparate parts of the country.

Quick-Thinking Mom Uses 'Taco Tactics' to Outfox Fake Cop

The L.A. Times reports that quick-thinking mom of four used a taco to distract a man on a bike who pulled a gun, a badge, and demanded money. The family was on their way home from a waterpark when the supposed undercover cop pulled up their minivan and demanded money.

"She offered the man a taco and told him she was going to get napkins from the food truck. As she walked away, the man continued to show his gun and dig through her purse, authorities said.

The woman told people working in the truck and customers standing in line to not look at her van but to call 911. Customers and a man working in the truck called authorities, and deputies with the Sheriff’s Department’s Industry station found the man standing next to the family’s van.

When the man saw patrol cars, he tossed his handgun into the family’s vehicle and tried to get in, according to the Sheriff’s Department. Deputies recovered the gun and arrested him."

The suspect, 38-year-old Juan Rodriguez, was arrested on suspicion of child endangerment and impersonating a peace officer. The mother's name was not released, but we salute her for protecting her children and immediately grasping the power of the taco to defuse a terrifying situation.

Some of LA’s Finest Burritos Just Took Up Residence on Fairfax

It seems like just last week we were reporting that perennial Taco Madness competitor Burritos La Palma was popping up in Silver Lake. The suddenly-everywhere mini-chain which just a few years ago was largely unknown in Los Angeles has now, according to Eater LA, taken up residence inside of Plan Check on Fairfax. The arrangement sounds slightly awkward, but bringing the lauded birria burritos to the West Side is a huge coup for both diners and the family behind the business. Eater's Farley Elliot reports:

"The Burritos La Palma menu is slightly more robust than usual, offering more than just the usual slew of flour tortilla-wrapped burritos. There’s also room for tacos, starters like queso or chips and guacamole, and sides like rice and beans. They are margarita pitchers for $49, with most other cocktails (tequila mules, palomas, etc.) hovering around $14."

Quick note: BLP inside Plan Check is only open from 4pm to 9pm, Monday through Sunday, 4-9 p.m. Sunday and Monday, 4-10 p.m. during the week, and 4-11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday night. Head to Eater to view the full menu.

Shrimp and chayote tartar taco from Tacocina
Shrimp and chayote tartar taco from Tacocina

Danny Meyer Gets Into the Taco Game

Famed fine-dining chef turned Shake Shack burger boss Danny Meyer has decided to try his hand at tacos. Grubstreet reports that Meyer, known equally for his top chef chops and his fast-casual ambitions, has opened Tacocina in Brooklyn:

"The menu is pretty much what you’d expect from a taqueria, abbreviated but not winnowed. Guacamole, salsa, and tortilla chips are available for snacking, of course, as are Mexican shrimp cocktail, and raw-vegetable picados with carrot crema. Tacos make up the bulk of the menu and include shrimp with chayote tartar sauce, as well as beef and potato. If you’re in the mood for a grilled cheese, you might opt for the Monterey and cotija cheese taco. As for dessert, there’s a single option: a vanilla ice-cream sandwich, half-coated in a crunchy chocolate shell, which should work to cool everyone down once the weather really warms up."

Given the nonstop growth of  Shake Shack, you've got to assume that if the concept works, we'll soon be seeing Tacocinas in malls and airports all over the world. Makes you wonder if there is an L.A. based restauranteur who could come up with their own fast-casual taco concept bent on world domination, or if our city will be content to let an East Coast taco chain become the Shake Shack of tacos ...

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