Essential T: Mulitas at Tacos Tamix

The pragmatics of al pastor

The very best Mexican foods start with the letter T—tacos, tortas, tlayudas. Here we showcase the tastiest “T” bites from the streets of L.A.

You may often wonder why it’s so common at taco vendors specializing in al pastor to find variety of dishes from the taco genre all featuring the marinated and spit-roasted meat: gringas (al pastor with melted cheese in a flour tortilla), a selection of alambres (al pastor hash), mulitas (al pastor and melted cheese in between two tortillas), and even tortas filled with al pastor. These tasty items are a way to clear out the first round of adobo marinated pork from the vertical spit, called a trompo, that while tasty, isn’t exactly suitable for the precision slices that are the signature of al pastor.

In Los Angeles, only serious al pastor specialists like Tacos Tamix form their trompos into smooth brick-red pork tornados, reserving the trimmed lumps of al pastor into a pan to facilitate menu items like Tamix’s mulitas.  Once the trompo has attained it’s shapely ideal, the taqueros are ready to slice, catch, and flip uniformed divisions of juicy pork and pineapple chunks onto small tortillas for the main event, but the mulita adds another level of the al pastor experience.

Mulita at Tacos Tamix
Mulita at Tacos Tamix

Photo by Bill Esparza

The seasoned taqueros of Tacos Tamix have downsized from a food truck to a table on Pico Bl. just East of La Brea, but still have a tight, professional operation when it comes to al pastor. Their mulita has the delicious first cuts of al pastor from the trompo with melted cheese sandwiched between two corn tortillas. While it’s still hot, peel it apart, add the three amigos of the street taco: chopped onion, cilantro and salsa—get Tamix’s smoky chipotle—add a squirt of lime and you’re all set. It’s a tasty way to enjoy al pastor while helping the taqueros not let any of that coveted pork go to waste—it’s a win-win situation.

Tacos Tamix, West Pico. Bl. and South Tremaine Ave. Mid-City