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The Taco Wire: Gustavo Arellano’s Great Tortilla Tournament; Taco Bell’s Reaper Fries; Taquero Shot While Protecting Wife

10:31 AM PDT on August 21, 2018

Welcome to The Taco Wire. Each week, we serve you a roundup of stories on all things tacos and the universe of Mexican food that are making headlines in Los Angeles and beyond. Cuz, it's never not a good time for tacos.

Gustavo Arellano Embarks on Great Tortilla Tournament with KCRW

[dropcap size=big]L[/dropcap].A. Taco editor at large Gustavo Arellano is taking the ultimate gluten challenge as he, KCRW’s Evan Kleiman, Nick Liao and Connie Alvarez will match up tortillas from all over Southern California in a #MasaMadness bracket to see who makes the best tortilla. In true NCAA fashion, the contest will start with 32 competitors in the corn category and 32 from Team Flour. The final four will compete in a Sept. 16 finale and one will walk away with the Golden Tortilla trophy. Go here to see if your favorite tortilleria will be going for all the maiz (or harina) glory.

Tijuana Wastewater to be Used in Guadalupe Valley Vineyards

[dropcap size=big]P[/dropcap]lans are in place to take wastewater from Tijuana, treat it, and then bring it to Baja California’s celebrated Guadalupe Valley wine region to water the vineyards. The San Diego Union Tribune reports that a private group of Israeli and Mexican investors are expected to move forward with a proposal any day now to build a sewage treatment plant and aqueduct from southeastern TJ to the Guadalupe Valley. Unclear, who’s going to want to drink wine whose grapes come from caca water? It's fully treated, yes ...

Local Magazine Names Dallas ‘Taco City’ ~  LOL

[dropcap size=big]W[/dropcap]hen the cover of D Magazine’s September issue was unveiled touting Dallas as “Taco City,” the Twitter-verse went a little nuts with the trolling. According to, even San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg get in on the clap backs with a simple LOL tweet. Reminds of the time that Austin tried to take the title in 2016. (Note: Tacos were invented at the dawn of civilization by indigenous peoples in Mesoamerica. The modern taco was developed in Los Angeles nearly 100 year ago.)

Las Vegas Taquero Shot While Protecting His Wife from Robbers

[dropcap size=big]P[/dropcap]olice in Las Vegas are investigating a violent robbery after the owner of a taco cart was shot in the thigh Sunday when he tried to stop a group of “young boys” from robbing his wife. Fox 5 reports that the taquero was cooking around 9 pm when a group of “troublemakers” approached his wife and tried to rob her. The food cart owner tried to step in and he was shot. The shooters got away and neighbors in the area told Fox 5 the group has been a problem for some time. Police say they are looking for five to six juveniles in the incident. No word yet on the status of the taquero.

Taco Charlton Shows Off New ‘Taco’ Bling

[dropcap size=big]D[/dropcap]allas Cowboy defensive end Vidauntae Charlton – known as Taco because that’s what his mother and grandmother used to call him – showed off his taco-licious skills Saturday against the Cincinnati Bengals in a series of impressive plays that included running down a tackle and forcing a fumble, the Fort Worth Star Telegram says. Perhaps the most impressive part his preseason game was after it was all over. During post-game interviews, Taco showed off the most delicious bling: a large, taco-shaped medallion that was custom made by L.A. jeweler Ben Baller.

Taco Bell Testing Reaper Fries

[dropcap size=big]I[/dropcap]rvine-based Taco Bell is once again testing fries on its menu, this time with a trial of Rattlesnake and Reaper Ranch-flavored varieties at test locations in Ohio. The reaper flavor comes with sauce made with Carolina Reaper, said to be the hottest pepper on the planet, according to National Restaurant News. The new, spicier flavors come after the positive reception of its Nacho Fries.

Tucker Carlson Claims Tacos Are 'American' Food

[dropcap size=big]F[/dropcap]ox News host Tucker Carlson tried to drum up more drama with guest Enrique Acevedo while discussing the controversy surrounding two Mexican eateries in Houston that served Attorney General Jeff Sessions. At one point in the obnoxious interviewer's comments, he claims that tacos are "American." In case there's any doubt, they're not. Tacos are Mexican food. Eaten in the U.S., yes, but you're eating Mexican, Tucker.

Watch below if you dare:

Got any tips? Send your taco leads to L.A. native Serena Maria Daniels, national taco wire editor, and founder of the Detroit-based Tostada Magazine.

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