Todos Los Tacos: The Tacos of Compton

July 27, 2021

Compton tacos are definitely not a purist’s taco. Made of flour tortillas filled with BBQ chicken, brisket or deep-fried turkey and lots of shredded cheese and sour cream, they break all the traditional street taco rules. 

But at the heart of this Southern L.A. dish is a fascinating story about the fusion of two distinct cultures.

Compton, a historically Black city nestled in Los Angeles County, has been evolving since rap artists put it on the map in the 1980s. Over the past few decades, it’s seen a major influx of Latinos. And as these two communities began to blend together, the food scene evolved right alongside them.

The “Americanized” taco trend is on the rise in Compton, driven mostly by locals who hustled and grinded their way into the limelight in the midst of a hyper-competitive food landscape. 

Like All Flavor No Grease’s Keith Garrett, who started selling tacos in his driveway as a way to turn over a new leaf in his life, and soon became a beacon in his community.

Or Jermelle Henderson from Taco Mell, a visionary who evolved his side hustle from a taco cart to a taco truck to a catering company and full service restaurant.

Join us as we dive into Garrett and Henderson’s stories and explore the scene with the local expert on L.A. tacos, Javier Cabral. To hear their stories and explore the scene with the local expert on L.A. tacos, Javier Cabral, check out the premiere episode of our reboot of the VICE and MUNCHIES hit series, Todos Los Tacos.

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