This is the Austin breakfast taco that can win over Angelenos
Plus, the 101 arrives next week.
earlier this year.) Breakfast tacos are foremost the domain of Texas. Though Angelenos have embraced the morning taco most fervently at Texas native Briana Valdez’s five locations of HomeState, if you’re willing to open your mind to another possibility, the wonderful migas tacos at Hot Tacos come with a deep pedigree.
The migas tacos the Vazquezes and their team serve in Koreatown definitely rival their Austin counterparts.(Bill Addison / Los Angeles Times)The enterprise is an L.A. rebranding of Veracruz All Natural, a modern Austin institution started by sisters and co-owners Reyna and Maritza Vazquez in 2008. Texans will never run out of impassioned words over origins, ownership and superiority debates when it comes to breakfast tacos, but most everyone I know who’s started their day with a migas taco from Veracruz All Natural agree it has a place in the lexicon.
During my years wandering the country for Eater, every time I passed through Austin, I shared breakfast tacos, elbows on a picnic table, with a local friend at Veracruz’s original east Austin location. Since those years, the Vazquez sisters were forced to move from that lot. (In September, my colleague Fidel Martinez, a native of Texas’ Rio Grande Valley, headtopics.com
wrote a storydiscussing Veracruz All Natural and the ongoing gentrification in east Austin.) The business has been expanding around Austin for the last decade, including a takeout window at Austin’s Line Hotel; parking the Hot Tacos truck in a corner of the hotel’s Koreatown property, with rows of palm trees and the Oasis Church’s Romanesque grandeur as a scene-setting backdrop, was an organic extension of the partnership.
About the migas: corn or flour tortilla? Beet juice dyes the corn tortillas an on-brand soft pink, but unless you aren’t eating wheat, you should ask for a flour tortilla, which are homemade and appealingly tensile to best cradle all the ingredients. The black beans are an L.A. addition that I can take or leave. And though I respect the vegetarian nature of the original Austin version, Hot Taco includes options for chorizo or bacon, and they enhance things meaningfully. Chorizo adds sauciness and helps melt the cheese; strips of bacon bring in the critical breakfast crispness.
I hesitate to use the word “improvement,” but the migas tacos the Vazquezes and their team serve in Koreatown definitely rival their Austin counterparts.The truck operates from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday, and while the migas are the clear draw, the rest of the menu leans to lunch, with tacos and quesadillas filled with citrusy cochinita pibil, grilled chicken or steak and “al pastor cauliflower” with a bit of crunch and laced with pineapple.
Go now. The duration of Hot Taco’s Koreatown run (which began in October) is nebulous and potentially ends in January. The owners have said they are looking to establish a more permanent location now, but nothing is yet definite. While it’s within certain reach, the migas taco alone deserves a morning detour. headtopics.com
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