Every life, every aspect, every section and career of our world is filled with its own mysteries, its own urban legends, myths, curiosities, hand-down stories, etc. Legendary figures, unexplained circumstances, the mysterious popping up of something awesome, I’m sure we’ve all heard of these things at one point or another, and probably for the oddest of things at times.
In fact, there’s a certain little tale I’ve come across, some of you may have heard it; the legend of a certain K-Mart parking lot, occupied every day by the same two Mexican Taco Trucks. They station themselves at either end of the asphalt battleground, each Truck a mirror reflection in style and food yet completely opposite in appearance. One is supposedly simple and old-fashioned, while the other stands bright and “modern” by comparison.
What is this “K-Mart” of which they speak, and where is it? Do these trucks really exist? What compelled them to park there like this?
The answers are: basically a Red Walmart, Uptown near Nicolette and Lake, Yes, and that’s still the thing of Myths. Theories and questions abound for these two side-by-side servers of the masa-wrapped packages. Are they two brothers acting out a life-long struggle to prove who’s better, a single owner looking to trick the masses while increasing profit, an old-fashioned truck coming in to prove its dominance over the more modern trends (or the other way around?!)??!! Maybe they started as one truck, only to have fired an angry employee for his radical views in the evolution of Mexican culinary scene, and who in revenge started his OWN Truck which he then parked across the lot, facing down his previous employers every day (this theory courtesy of a friend of mine).
Or maybe they’re just two business owners who liked setting up in this K-Mart lot… either way.
Of course I was lucky enough to spot this K-Mart on one of my drives in the Uptown area, and got the chance to confirm these mystery taco trucks for myself soon after. But to my surprise and luck, I did not find two trucks in the lot waiting for orders; I found THREE!! Though I think this might be new, considering one of them is a Food Truck Regular out on certain streets, while the other two are supposedly only know by those visiting the lot…
Whether it’s cashing in on rumors started by the other two, filling in for another, or just decided to wander in, Taco Taxi has inserted one of their bigger mobile operations in one of the corners. Anyone else sorta reminded of Tacqueria Hacienda’s truck but just different colors? I swear when I saw these guys I started worrying they went out of business and got their Truck bought…
Still has the giant bin of various Mexican Sodas.
For only $1.50 each, you can buy small masa tacos filled with whatever meat ya want. They will ask if you want onions and cilantro; say yes, always say yes, it is not a real taco without it. I myself finally got to get my Cheek Meat (Cabeza)!
Across the asphalt stood Taqueria el Primo, the old-fashioned looking white taco truck with a Sombrero-wearing Food Mascot on the side.
As with a PROPER Mexican Truck, they’re a lot more adventurous with (possible) meat selection; they of course have Asada and Carnitas and whatever, but one can also come in at times to find the street-aware Beef Tongue, Cheek, BRAINS, and something called “Buche.”
Of course these aren’t always here, as I found out; they had a little list on paper near the window listing the options that day, and what had run out. Happily for me, they still had Buche, so I ordered one.
For $2, you get a bigger taco than Taxi across the street, as well as the ability to add different hot sauces to your own pleasure from squeeze bottles (they just handed a little cup of one over at Taxi). As for Buche, they note it as “Pork Maw” on here, though research has found this term a bit confused. The consent is that it’s actually stomach, so basically the pork version of Tripe, though one thing said esophagus, I’m sure some people call parts of the mouth buche, so it depends… but I’m pretty sure what I ate was stomach.
With my hunger for Mexican-style Offal Meat just growing, I headed to the 3rd and final truck, El Chilo, which I had seen right next to Primo on a previous day.
I was very happy to see a menu just-as-filled with familiar and not-so-much items to choose from. Especially since I saw my chance to try S/Cesos (Beef Brains).
Apparently, though, they weren’t actually open. They’re truck was outside, with all the windows and serving areas open, but they were just cleaning. I was a bit frustrated, too, as I attempted to ask a guy if they were serving and if I could have a taco, with his response seeming quite positive and “sure.” And then he just went back to cleaning…
So my zombie-like craving for brains went un-requited, and still has since then. For some reason, despite a couple other return visits, Chilo was nowhere to be found, though Taxi was still in the same place. This leads me to wonder, is Taco Taxi simply filling in on the days Chilo isn’t available, have they been gone for long or just on days I visited, has Chilo been booted out of their lot by the growing competition!?
Well, it’s only fitting that more mysteries abound from the MN Food Truck Scene’s own little urban legend. Hopefully one day I shall return to find the big orange behemoth out so I can figure out their price and what brains actually taste like. I shall report when I do.
For those who haven’t sought out this myth yet, I definitely urge you to do; and for those who have, any idea what’s up with Chilo? But whatever one’s situation, we still have other mysteries and legends to explore in the rest of our everyday lives. While I go and try to figure out some more, I say Good Luck and Good Eating to you all.