Photograph of delicious tacos
Photograph of delicious tacos from La Imperial Taqueria.

Outside of La Imperial Taqueria
Outside of La Imperial Taqueria on Shafter, California.

Place: La Imperial Taqueria

Category: Tacos; Mexican



Location: 189 E Lerdo Hwy, Shafter, CA 93263

Date of visit: 2021 May 8

On Saturday May 8 I decided to head to Bakersfield Speedway for some traditional sprint car races. Because of COVID they said their concession stands would be closed (although they ended up have some food for purchase under a tent). You can bring food in with you, but I decided to stop at La Imperial Taqueria in Schaffer, California instead. I got 6 tacos: 2 of each of Asada, Carnitas, and Pastor. They came with some lightly pickled onions and some slices of radish. The pickled onions were good but nothing amazing and the radishes were radishes: nothing much to say about them except they were fresh and tasty.

You might not be able to get the best pizza in California but you can get some darn good tacos. That’s what these were! They had a lot of meat considering the $2 each price tag. All three kinds I ordered were outstanding and I’d definitely get them all again. La Imperial Taqueria might become a routine stop on the way to Bakersfield Speedway for me. If I had to pick one of the three that was the best, I’d say the pastor was but, as I said, they were all great.

I don’t see myself going back except if I’m going to the races because I’d have no other reason to go near their location otherwise and it isn’t right

off the Interstate. Apparently, they have two other locations. One in Bakersfield and one in Wasco. Perhaps I can get to one of them (most likely the one in Wasco before a Wasco Reserves Pecos League baseball game).


A taco from El Grullense Jal 5 in Santa Nella.

Place: El Grullense Jal 5

Category: Road Food, Mexican, Tacos



Location: 12185 S. Hwy 33, Santa Nella, Ca 95322 

Date of visit: 2021 April 10

When I finally got about an hour and half from home on my cross-country road trip, I was getting really hungry. Santa Nella Village (at least the part by I-5) is a bunch of truck stops, gas stations, fast food places, and a Pea Soup Andersen’s. I would have gone to Andersen’s as it is on my hit list, but I was getting tired and it was almost closing time for the restaurant. Instead of a fast-food chain, I decided to check out a taco truck. It seems every gas station in this oasis off of exit 407, if not connected to a fast-food place, has a taco truck in the parking lot. I mostly randomly choose this one but the Arco gas was the cheapest in the area so that was the deciding factor. I have since been to another taco truck off this exit so there will be a post for that one. Spoiler alert: both were delicious!  

taco truck
El Grullense Jal 5 taco truck at night in Santa Nella.

I noticed this truck has a #5 on it. I am not sure if that means there are more trucks by the same owners or if this is the fifth version of this owner’s truck. An internet search finds other places (both trucks and buildings) with the same name so I think there might be a relationship but what the relationship is, is unclear to me. Regardless, El Grullense Jal is definitely not a huge multi-national corporation so good enough to make it to Ed’s Eats!

I decide to purchase one taco and one burrito. Both were amazing. Like most of these taco trucks they offer various meats and the two I had, carne asada and al pastor, were both perfectly cooked and seasoned. The toppings and condiments that came with the food were also tasty and the prices were good.

A burrito from El Grullense Jal 5 inn Santa Nella.

One thing I liked about this taco truck is that they had some picnic tables under a tent. Since I stopped by at night the tent wasn’t important this time but during the day Santa Nella can get hot. The last time I drove through there during the day it was about 105 degrees! A lot of taco trucks have no seating so this is definitely a plus and I will be stopping at El Grullense Jal 5 again! You should too if you want tasty Mexican food and you are in the area.

Tacos La Potranca de Jalisco
Exterior of Tacos La Potranca de Jalisco in King City, California.

Place: Tacos La Potranca De Jalisco

Category: Mexican

Website: h


Location: 201 Broadway St, King City, CA 93930

Date of visit: 2021 February 7

On the afternoon of Sunday, February 7, 2021 I found myself in King City, California after going backpacking. I was pretty hungry so I decided to stop at Tacos La Potranca De Jalisco for lunch. While there looked to be a number of good places for lunch in King City I chose this place because I liked that it was a walk-up window and there were some tables out front. After backpacking I was probably pretty smelly and was kind of warn out so this seemed like a good option.

Two tacos from Tacos La Potranca de Jalisco

I ordered a burrito and two tacos for a total of $10.98 (including tax). Because it was the day of the big football game they had a special were they were also giving customers a free fountain drink. You might think at first glance that $10.98 is not very cheap, but if you saw the size of the burrito and the tacos you would know that it was enough food to feed two people. The burrito, especially, was huge!

Tacos La Potranca De Jalisco offers a wide range of meat choices as well as vegetarian options. While I didn’t go for a vegetarian option, a person behind me in line did and she said it was really good. I went with an asada (beef) and a pastor (bar-b-que pork) taco. The burrito I ordered was filled with carnitas (shredded pork), rice, beans, onions, cilantro, and salsa. Other meat options include pollo (chicken), lengua (beef tongue), cabeza (beef head), tripas (beef intestines).

As I already mentioned the tacos and burrito were huge. They were also delicious! I think they may have been the best I’ve ever had. If not, they were right up there. All three meat options I tried were great. It is hard to a favorite but I’d probably say I liked the pastor pork the best of the three. The food was also served with pickled carrots which were really good as well. I almost was going to ask if they would sell me a container of the carrots to bring home.

photo of burrito
Carnitas burrito from Tacos La Potranca De Jalisco in King City, CA.

Although I don’t find myself in or near King City often, I will definitely go to Tacos La Potranca De Jalisco again. I probably won’t get a burrito and two tacos though because it was too much food. I was stuffed after eating them. Would I suggest someone to drive an hour from the city City of Monterey just to go to Tacos La Potranca De Jalisco? No, that would be silly considering he number of places to get tacos nearby. However, if you are ever driving past King City on 101 and want to get something to eat, I highly suggest you give it a try.

Taqueria Zarape's buildine
Photograph of the exterior of Taqueria Zarape.

Place: Taqueria Zarape

Category: Mexican



Location: 1107 Fremont Blvd. Seaside, CA 93955

Date of visit: 2021 January 31

On Sunday, January 31, 2021 I went to Taqueria Zarape for the first time. I really have no excuse for not getting to this place before because it has always been on my list since I moved to the area. The old time drive-up style building is very inviting. I think the main reason I haven’t been here before is I tend to acquire my tacos from food truck so had no need to go get a taco elsewhere.

While we are once again allowed to dine outside in Monterey and Taqueria Zarape had a few tables set up, I decided to get my food to go. I ordered a taco and enchilada combination platter for $9.99 before tax.. The combination platter came with beans and rice as well as some salsa and chips. I noticed that they have a salsa bar which was obviously closed due to the current circumstances. However, I’m intrigued.

Taco and enchilada combination platter
Taco and enchilada combination platter from Taqueria Zarape

Taqueria Zarape has a wide range of meat options. For the more adventurous readers choices include beef tripe, beef tongue, and pig stomach. I was not that adventurous and got a carne asada (beef steak) taco and a carnitas (shredded pork) enchilada. They also have a couple of chicken options, a couple of other pork options, and chorizo.

The taco was pretty big. The carne asada filling and the toppings were delicious. The enchilada was also a good size. The carnitas inside was cooked perfectly and the enchilada sauce was tasty. I really enjoyed both and don’t know which one I liked better. The chips, beans and rice filled out the meal nicely. They all tasted good and between all the food I was fill by the time.

As usual it is hard to judge customer service when getting take out but I definitely have no complaints. The staff was friendly and there was no delay in getting my food. Instead of ordering ahead, I ordered when I arrived. It did not take them very long before my food was ready—I was actually surprised it was ready so soon!

I definitely will be bag to try some of their other foods and different meat choices. I doubt I’ll be adventurous enough to try the pig stomach or the beef tripe but perhaps I’ll give the beef tongue a try. I also noticed they have some breakfast platter and breakfast burritos for reasonable prices. I really haven’t found many breakfast places I like in Monterey. There are some places that have great food but they are not all that cheap. Perhaps Taqueria Zarape’s breakfast offerings will fill that void for me.