Very Important Taco: Chicken and Carnitas Tacos at Las Cuatro Milpas

 

These tacos aren’t Baja-Med. Who knows whether the corn for the masa is non-GMO. They definitely don’t taste like they’ll balance your chakras, and the restaurant itself sure as hell isn’t trendy—it’s been a pillar of the Barrio Logan community for nearly 90 years, and you don’t want it to change, ever. These crunchy, fatty tacos are legendary, and that’s why there’s always a line outside of Las Cuatro Milpas (and the queue was there long before a Michelin inspector finally smelled the spicy salsa and showed up this year).

The old-school menu board with changeable plastic letters shows just a few choices: hard-shell carnitas or chicken tacos stuffed with lettuce and queso fresco at $1.75 each, five rolled tacos for $5, tamales, burritos. Grab a tray, slide it down the cafeteria-style service line, and watch as the tortillas float in a huge pot of lard on the stove like lily pads on a pond as they fry to a crisp. No matter what you order, save room for a side of the famous rice and beans that come with a doughy flour tortilla—they’re as warm and comforting as a hug from your grandmother.

Stop putting off having a meal at Milpas or making excuses about the line being too long (it moves fast). Just get here. Ahora.

1857 Logan Avenue, Barrio Logan

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