Los Angeles, Calif.
What to Order: The Original Brisketaco
What happens when Jewish cuisine meets California Mexican food? Takosher, that’s what: A kosher taco truck that takes the staples of a Jewish meal and wraps them in tortilla shells. The blue Mexi-Jew fusion mobile, emblazoned with the slogan “The Chosen Taco,” brings the joys of the L.A. taco truck to the kosher community. The menu is small, but packs a punch: It includes a deep-fried potato wonder called the Latketaco, which Takosher serves with a dash of apple jalapeno chutney, and the Brisketaco, slow-braised brisket marinated in chili sauce, raisins and sauerkraut, then sliced and topped with cilantro.
Check out our round up of Jewish and Kosher food trucks from around North America.
To reinterpret Tennyson: In the autumn a not-so-young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of brisket.
Even in Los Angeles, the alleged city of no seasons, the days get shorter and the evenings get chilly. At such times my thoughts turn to big, comforting hunks of meat.
This year I wanted a new twist on an old Jewish favorite. So I called Lowell Bernstein, a founder of Takosher, the kosher Mexican food truck that makes inventive tacos from Jewish standards like latkes and brisket.
When asked which was harder, dealing with city regulations of opening a food truck or taking on the challenges of kashrut for a restaurant on wheels, Lowell Bernstein, co-owner of Takosher in Los Angeles, the first ever Glatt kosher taco truck, replied, “kashrut, without a question.” Takosher’s owners spent months working out a “kosher program” with rabbis, and that was after the long search for a mashgiach, or kosher supervisor, even up for the job.
But kashrut is not the only challenge Bernstein and other food truck owners are facing. Running a food truck is wrought with obstacles. In many cities across the U.S., including Los Angeles, the hub of the current American food truck craze, the proliferation of food trucks has been met with less than open arms by some. City officials in Washington, DC and Sacramento have introduced legislation making it tough for trucks to open and keep operating. They claim food carts unfairly compete with brick and mortar businesses, ignore zoning laws, leaving behind litter and overstaying their welcome in precious urban parking spaces.