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Asian Persuasion: Celebrate Cinco de Mayo the Asian Taco Way
For this Cinco de Mayo, why not make it Taco de Chino?
If you’re so inclined, there are no shortage of places to indulge in margaritas and tacos tonight. But in a city where blending flavors is the name of the game–this is where the O.G. Kogi taco was created, after all—celebrating with tacos inspired by Asian flavors makes just as much tasty sense. Here are cinco of our new favorites:
- Oi Asian Fusion in Canoga Park is a pork-centric shop focusing on Filipino flavors. Their pork belly taco combines tender, soy sauce-braised pork belly with the sunny flavor of cilantro cream, all folded into a thin sheet of fresh jicama that stands in for a tortilla.
- Over in Cerritos, Amor y Tacos offers King Dragon tacos (in honor of the Chinese restaurant that formerly occupied the space) made with crispy roasted duck. Hoisin sauce permeates succulent slices of duck while flavorful bits of kimchi, cilantro, radish, cucumber, and sesame seeds add pop with each bite. The best feature is the scallion tortilla which cleverly mimics a Chinese favorite, the scallion pancake.
- Starting May 21 for its “Red Hour,” Beverly Hill’s venerated, modern Vietnamese restaurant Crustacean will be serving exquisitely delicate lengua tacos from its “Secret Kitchen” menu. They’re filled with moist, braised beef tongue and balanced by Vietnamese coriander, pickled heirloom beets, radishes, and bean sprouts. A light and flaky shell fashioned from flash-fried wonton skin keeps it all together.
- Culver City represents the Asian taco movement with East Borough’s Oxtail Taco. This braised bit of tail meat is showered with crema, charred scallions and fresno chiles, guacamole, and red onions. However, this particular hand held treat is only available for one day on Cinco de Mayo or, as they’re calling it, “Chino de Mayo.”
- If you’re feeling extra goofy or had mucho mas tequila-based beverages, you might consider Jidaiya in Gardena for its taco and ramen mash-up. The bowl is a blend of tonkotsu and tomato broth filled with noodles, but the real attention-grabbers are the other ingredients: globs of spicy ground pork, avocado slices, cilantro, and half a crunchy taco shell jutting out like a shark’s fin.
Oi Asian Fusion, 7242 Canoga Ave., Canoga Park, 818-776-0282 or oiasianfusion.com
Amor y Tacos, 13333 South St., Cerritos, 562-860-2667 or amorytacos.com
Crustacean, 9646 S. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, 310-205-8990 or houseofan.com
East Borough, 9810 Washington Blvd., Culver City, 310-596-8266 or east-borough.com
Jidaiya, 18537 S. Western Ave., Gardena, 310-532-0999