Legendary | Worth driving from anywhere
Tacos La Central
Review by: Maggie Rosenberg & Trevor Hagstrom
Taco stands are everywhere in Southern California. Most are mobile, and they can all feel like moving targets. As soon as one is hyped, people start lining up, and when that happens, quality can suffer. All that notwithstanding, our favorite taco discovery in the state is La Central Tacos in Colton.
Most tacos are the sum of two simple components: corn tortilla and meat. Really good taquerias make tortillas by hand throughout the day. Those made at La Central aren’t particularly oily, but don’t eat dry. This displays their confidence in the product. Mediocre tortillas a mano often rely on oil for flavor.
There are only four meat choices. From the adobada spit, crowned with a halved pineapple, come tacos Arabes, shaved off like shawarma. The meat is well-seasoned, not greasy, and delivers good, fresh pork flavor — well abetted by a zesty house sauce.
Chicken, steak (asada), and chorizo are all grilled over mesquite wood. Although chicken tacos elsewhere often are just gringo appeasement, these hold chicken that is charred, succulent, and aromatic with mesquite. Soft, juicy steak, chopped into hash, tastes less of the grill, with just a touch of wood flavor, Chorizo is the richest choice: greasy and salty, but nothing abnormal for Mexican chorizo. The grilling adds crisp texture to the crumbly sausage.
We like that the tacos are not overloaded and are relatively easy to eat without too much spilling out. Toppings are not overwhelming; they are merely the right accents for meat. A few finely minced onions, cilantro, and some medium-hot red salsa all are good supporting players. Mousse-like guacamole adds more texture than flavor.
The only other item on the menu is the mighty mulita. This is an overstuffed corn quesadilla filled with your choice of the four meats. We like it with the adobada, its unbridled heft the opposite of La Central’s polite tacos. This is the one to order when you’re in the mood to get down and dirty.
Directions & Hours
- Monday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
- Tuesday: Closed
- Wednesday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
- Thursday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
- Friday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
- Saturday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
- Sunday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
|Credit Cards Accepted||Yes|