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RATINGS
Food
Service
Value
Atmosphere

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CUISINES
Mexican, Latin, Spanish
Special Diets
Vegetarian Friendly
Meals
Lunch, Dinner
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meals, features
Reviews (52)
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16
5
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4
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LanguageEnglish
Traveler rating
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5
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4
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Reviewed June 6, 2021

Michoacan (pronounced Mitch-Oh-ah-Can) State, South of Guadalajara, West of Mexico City, Family owned Restaurant opened and set up in 1969 in the then failed Galley Cafè on Rosecrans overlooking the Manhattan Beach Bay by a good looking, talented young couple, Moisës and Celia, now deceased,...who spoke no English at all at the time, but whose cooking skills lined up customers around the block on Highland past Cisco's Night Club until 2 AM every Weekend not closing until 3 or 4 AM, 2 hours after actual closing time! The oldest, a boy-10 years old, who spoke English from LASD School, took orders; the youngest (a Kindergarten age Daughter), set the counter, whenever they were available. Both NOW own the Resultant's multi-million dollar Tarasco Franchise of 11 or 12 Restaurants, of which the LAX Tarasco is an excellent One, with their siblings and the grandchildren. It Pays to help and learn from one's own Parents! The Secrets of their Cooking are: 1.) the Ingredients -:- The Sauce and the Cheese; 2.) Extreme Cleanliness, which could be seen easily from the Counter of the original restaurant as it formed the North wall itself of the kitchen; and, most essential of all to good Flavor: 3.) TEMPERATURE; the food was oven cooked to well above 212º F for five to ten minutes, and served that way in your dish--Boiling, the edges of the food in the plain white, oval Dish browned by the Heat! Watch out! It is this Last vanishing Lost Point that you need to INSIST upon to get your 5 * Star Rated Food served: Cooked to 212º F--and served that way--Boiling! This is the same for ALL Mexican style Restaurants, Do not ignore this all important fact, Otherwise, you see, even the best designed food will be merely tepid in Flavor. because most Mexican-American Cooks cook their food only enough to warm it, but that is not enough Heat to thoroughly Melt the cheese in order to bring out the hidden flavor of the sauce by Blooming the Spices and the Cheese together. However, when you and they do this, Then: Voilâ ! Moisës and Celia knew this Secret instinctively, but that is because they were Artisans, not just cooks, and so they raised-up their simple Galley Cafè Counter into this Multi-Million dollar Family Owned FRANCHISE enjoyed by Americans first and Hispanics alike. Do not forget our little secret! It is also known to ALL traditional Italians and Chinese alike, In the LORD JESUS CHRIST NAME.More

Date of visit: June 2021
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Reviewed August 21, 2019 via mobile

Stopped here as part of a walking food tour of Venice Beach, food was quick, tasty & staff were friendly! Its only half a block from the beach, how could you go wrong!!

Date of visit: August 2019
Helpful?1  
Reviewed June 26, 2019

When visiting LA recently my uncle suggested doing an early lunch before we headed to the airport and we decided to meet at El Tarasco. It's a place he likes a lot and goes to on a semi-regular basis. We'd never been prior. The place...was fair. The food was ok, but not great. The service was good, but not amazing. The food was brought out fast though. There was plenty of parking in back and there was a nice air flow through the restaurant keeping the place cool. It was ok but I wouldn't seek it out to go to again.More

Date of visit: July 2018
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Reviewed March 30, 2019 via mobile

The food is great and comes quick. It was busy when we arrived and our food still came quickly. Very impressive.

Date of visit: March 2019
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Reviewed March 27, 2019

We took a short Lyft over from the Airport Marriott and were grateful to see Trader Joe's across the street so I could buy breakfast food. All that is beside the point. This is a long thin restaurant. Fairly busy on a Sunday night. The...service was good and the food was good, not exceptional, at least not my dish. I got the vegetable burrito which was tasty but had too much rice in proportion to the veggies. My friend got the #15 Steak green chili and loved it. Neither of us finished our dinners - way too much food. Maybe because the chips and salsa were abundant and we ate them and some of a refill while we waited for our dinners. Would I return? Maybe, but probably not, considering that there are plenty of other options. If you found this review helpful, please press thank below.More

Date of visit: March 2019
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Reviewed March 18, 2019

Spent overnight between East Coast and Japan at an LAX hotel. We are originally from So. Cal. and we were out to get some REAL Mexican food, or at least Cal/Mex food. We just can't get anything like in South Carolina!. So, we looked up...El Tarasco. A nice story about an immigrant success. We were very disapoointed. The taco "meat" was a half step above the meat paste that Taco Bell passes off to unsuspecting customers. Awful! The refried beans were okay, but the restaurant is way overpriced for the "food" they serve.More

Date of visit: January 2019
Helpful?1  
Reviewed January 27, 2019 via mobile

Disgusting plastic taste from the beef Tacos. No idea why, but that's not normal. The chips were rock hard. I've never had such bad tasting Mexican food before. This was very surprising given how good the reviews are.

Date of visit: January 2019
Helpful?1  
Reviewed January 15, 2019

The food at El tarasco has always been very tasty, but it used to be reasonably priced. Now the food is till good, but, too pricey

Date of visit: January 2019
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Reviewed December 5, 2018

After arriving in LA - and a 4+ hours trip, Mexican cuisine was welcomed. Nestled in a busy shopping center with other restaurants and plenty of parking.

Date of visit: December 2018
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Reviewed July 6, 2018 via mobile

Great and delicious food! Open late. Really good! 💙 we had tacos, burrito and a huge guacamole with giants chips. I'll go back if I'm in this area again.

Date of visit: July 2018
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Frequently Asked Questions about El Tarasco

Yes, El Tarasco offers takeout services.

El Tarasco is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travelers:
  • Food: 4
  • Service: 4
  • Value: 4
  • Atmosphere: 3.5