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El Camion

Seattle WA (North Seattle)

11728 aurora ave n, seattle WA 98133
mon-fri 8am-10pm, sat-sun 10am-10pm

El Camion

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Rating: 88
Price: $$

Following our mind-blowing experience at Taqueria la Fondita, my business associate Emma and I continued south on Highway 99 about 150 blocks (150 blocks closer to Mexico) to try out a truck she had heard good things about, El Camion. It's nestled behind an office building and abutting the driveway to a Home Depot. We showed up on a pleasant sunny winter day and got some nice seats outside, but even on a rainy day they've got a modified carport for taco consumption.

Pretty full from our bounty at la Fondita, we decided to split 3 tacos: one each of pollo asado, cochinita pibil, and adobada (a technique known as 'riding the boogie'). They came out pretty quickly, garnished with pico de gallo and accompanied by radishes and some mystery citrus. Even after every known test we could not agree as to whether it was a lemon or lime, but that's neither here nor there.

Starting with the tortillas, El Camion was a good experience. They were flavorful (surprisingly not the norm for most taco places) but in a subtle-enough manner to complement the meats. Similarly, the pico de gallo was very fresh and the tomatoes were explosively powerful. Working my way through the tacos, the pollo asado was a good meat well cooked and lightly seasoned. Definitely tender and juicy, but in my opinion (as is everything else here) it could have used a stronger marinade. Next up I tried the adobada. Just like at la Fondita, it was nice and juicy. It was missing something, though - perhaps the ratio of tang to spice was imperfect. It didn't quite measure up to the la Fondita adobada, though it was certainly good. My business associate Emma claimed it to be her favorite, but I preferred the cochinita pibil - a name I haven't seen elsewhere, though I've seen seasoned pork. It was much drier than the adobado, but still moist enough to rip easily with our incisors. It combined well with the tortilla and didn't dry out the mouth. The flavor was nuanced and basically indescribable. It had hints of a smoky flavor, as well as some pepper and salt. Overall, it hit the spot, and for some reason made me slightly wistful - perhaps El Camion took a page (literally) out of Like Water for Chocolate and employed some magical realism.

I was impressed by how busy El Camion was. In the ~25 minutes we were there, they probably had 15 unique customers, ordering everything ranging from monstrous burritos to delicious tacos. El Camion is one of the better trucks out there, and I'd like to return to try out the mulita and breakfast burrito next time I'm in the neighborhood.

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