Taco Maria, Carlos Salgado's Upscale Mexican Truck, Launches

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It's unusual for me to be excited by the opening of a food truck--so jaded!--but this one is a little bit different--literally a luxe lonchera, with high-end Mexican food being peddled from a catering truck.

A few months ago, we informed you that Carlos Salgado, the former pastry chef at Commis, Oakland's own temple of haute cuisine, had returned home to his native Orange to open Taco Maria. We all thought it was going to be a restaurant, perhaps a reinvention of his family's Batavia Street restaurant, La Siesta; it turns out it's actually a truck named Frida.


It's a little unexpected to see alta cocina dishes such as bone marrow coming from a truck; the menu is a list of dishes that wouldn't be out of place in a nice sit-down restaurant, and Salgado is paying close attention to where his ingredients are coming from, which will be crucial to convincing the Orange County public that good Mexican food is worth the premium.

I'm looking forward to the pescado al pastor, which sounds like it'll be a riff on the excellent coastal dish pescado adobado en hojas de maíz (chile-rubbed fish in corn husks), and to the bone marrow quesadillas.

The truck launches today at the Orange Vans Outlet (485 N. Tustin St., Orange), and this evening at La Siesta (1010 N. Batavia St., Orange); it'll be at the SoCo Collection clustertruck (3313 Hyland Ave., Costa Mesa) tomorrow for lunch. It'd be nice to see this sort of food rotated in at the pop-up seating in the SoCo building.

We'll hit up the truck soon--in the meantime, see the menu at tacomaria.com or follow the truck on Twitter @tacomaria.

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