Since 1781, people of Mexican descent have called Los Angeles home, so it is no surprise Los Angeles and its surroundings contain the highest concentrations of Mexicans in the country. Here you don't just eat 'Mexican food', you eat regional Mexican food. You can find Lamb Barbacoa made in the style of the North and in the same day head
to the Yucatan for a traditional Cochinita Pibil (pit-style pork.)

In Southern California, you find entrepreneurs sticking to the old ways and a new generation of Chicano and Mexican Americans redefining the taco working side by side. The newer chefs are allowing the diversity of the ethnic backgrounds of their customers to dictate their fillings. In California, tacos are as intertwined as they are in the fabric of Mexico. In California, tacos are done right. 

- Below are some places not to be missed -  

City Tacos
3208 University Avenue
San Diego, CA 92104

On a recommendation of a friend we checked out City Taco located in the North Park, an area that has seen a lot of changes over the past couple of years. Gerry Torres is taking classics and adding new ingredients and great technique. Although they are relatively new, they are sure to make a name for themselves beyond the borders of San Diego. A real stand out to this place is that they make both flour and corn tortillas on site, to order, ensuring that each filling is highlighted.

Don't miss the Chile Relleno Taco - Beer-battered chile guero filled with Oaxaca and cotija cheeses, diced tomato, onion and cilantro served on a homemade flour tortilla. We also recommend the Rockfish Baja-style fish taco. 

Las Cuatro Milpas
1857 Logan Avenue
San Diego, CA 92113

The Estudillo family have been serving Mexican food here for three generations. Las Curato Milpas has been located on Logan Avenue since 1983 where there is always a line out the door. What they offer is a skeletal menu of basics all done perfectly; beef, chicken, rice and beans. The rolled tacos pictured were nicely crisped and well seasoned. The tortillas here were a real stand out on the trip.

La Chiva Torta
Location Changes - Food Truck
Santa Ana, CA

Orange County has long been a place for tourism, but as the expense of living in LA increases, it has forced people to look East into cities like Santa Ana. The reason we swung through this area was the three blocks filled with a variety of different regional Mexican food trucks.

We recommend La Chiva Torta's Lengua tacos, and for the adventurous, the buche-fried pig intestines. 

1261 Sunset Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90026

Born in Boyle Heights and now spreading like wildfire with outposts all over LA, Guisados is a much lauded taqueria serving stewed-style tacos. Armando De La Torre Sr. & Armando De La Torre Jr. have tapped into a underdeveloped market of the taco game. In LA, where Northern Mexican styles that favor grilling are much more common, Guisados focuses on taco styles that you would see in other regions of the country.

Not to be missed are the Black Mole and the Bistec Con Salsa Roja tacos. All tacos are served on incredibly fresh tortillas to order from their families tortillaria, 

Guerilla Tacos
Location Changes - Food Truck
Los Angeles, CA

Being ranked the 17th best place to eat in LA, Guerrilla Tacos is a food truck that's impossible to miss. Wes Avila is redefining the taco as a street food and the public has taken note. On the day of our visit, we tried his Albacore Tuna Tostada with seaweed and togarashi. The star of the show, in our opinion, was his Sweet Potato taco with feta and an arbol chile salsa. Avila is constantly changing his menu to reflect what is fresh and what he is inspired by.

This is an absolute must if you are visiting the Los Angeles area. 

Kogi Korean BBQ
Location Changes - Food Truck
Los Angeles, CA

Roy Choi has defined what it means to be an owner and operator of a food truck, not only in Los Angeles, but across the country. He has been able to seamlessly combine the disparate elements of ethnicities in LA and corral them into his tacos. His Short Rib taco is famous, with Kogi being the only food truck we visited where we had to wait in line. They are not only the first food truck to reimagine what you can serve out of a mobile food establishment, but the first to also harness the power of social media. If they tweet it, you will come.