Alebrije's, Home of the Legendary Battleship Taco, Gets New Look, Items

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Dave, Edwin, Shuji and I have written so much about Alebrije's that we could publish a book about it (or--cue Oscar Bluth--am I?). It's all about the food: Mexico City-style favorites like pambazos, quesadillas and alambres, and the legendary taco acorazado, that monster of milanesa and masa that remains an essential OC eat.

But owner-chef Albert Hernandez doesn't rest on his laurels. Last week, he debuted a new look for his lonchera: wrapped ala the luxe youngsters, but keeping the Cadillac-pink tone that makes it so distinctive. And, better yet, there are new items on the menu, making Alebrije's stronger than ever.


The big local lonchera trend in the past couple of years has been street food from Cuernavaca, specifically the blooming of the taco acorazado and the picadita, which you can see below.

alebrijes_picadita.jpg

Think of it as a bigger, better sope--and a simpler one, at that. All it is is freshly grilled masa, thick and chewy, topped with a pool of crema fresca and salsa, a dusting of cotija cheese--and that's it. No meat. Hernadez puts the sides of his impeccably sauteed onions and grilled cactus paddles.

Many of the loncheras in SanTana sells them, but Alebrije's already makes the best. Since it's prepared fresh, the masa is still piping hot--but the crema fresca cools, the onions sweeten, the cheese adds tang. And don't underestimate that green salsa: I, who loves his habaneros raw, was sweating toward the end, much to Hernandez's glee.

Also on the menu: beso de monja, a Cuernavacan speciality so rare that most of the wabs who come by ask what it is. Hernandez, cognizant that even most Mexicans in SanTana don't know Cuernavacan cuisine, has helpfully printed large pictures of entrees in the ordering side of his truck, with ingredients as captions. And that's not all: Hernandez plans a mobile truck next year to complement the anchor on Cubbon and Main streets. "Time for me to get into this gourmet food truck phase," Hernandez said.

Luxe loncheras: be warned. Eaters: rejoice!

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11 comments
OcCUpy OC Weekly
OcCUpy OC Weekly

You guys are pretty tight with some of the places you "review" -- Alebrije's, Break of Dawn, etc. Is that how the bourgeois 1% stays fat?

the hungry mexican
the hungry mexican

i went there for dinner last night for a huarache and mulita. awesome as always. If you've never been, you have to go. Thank you Weekly for helping me find this lonchera.

20ftJesus
20ftJesus

What would you recommend ordering if it's our first time there (2 personas)?

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

Good for you! Have never had the Cubana, though...good shit?

20ftJesus
20ftJesus

zOMG--taco acorazado and the Albert-recommended Cubana torta. 

He's a nice guy.  Came down from the truck to introduce himself and asked how we were doing.  Highly recommended. 

Shuji Sakai
Shuji Sakai

The tripas ARE good! I'm also a fan of the quesadilla chilanga, which like the taco acorazado, is ENORMOUS. Bring a few 20 Foot Disciples and feed em all with just a few items.

Christian Z.
Christian Z.

Another good thing to start with is the suadero taco.

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

The taco acorazado is a must, and one we've written about a million times. Shuji, on the other hand, loves their tacos de tripa--chitlins! But if you're not feeling TOO adventurous, try the mulitas with your Mexi meat of choice!

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