Looking for good cheap tacos in an unfamiliar town can be a scary proposition, but you have no need to fear El Tarasco (109 Washington Blvd., Marina Del Rey, 310/306-8552, www.eltarascoburritos.com, daily 9 a.m.–11 p.m., $5–10). This walk-up dive taqueria has the locals’ stamp of approval, and boasts of the freshness of its food. Specialties of the house are the burritos and tostadas, which are big and cheap and yummy.
Even the full-fledged dinners that come with rice and beans and a combination of items please budget diners, since nothing on the menu costs more than $10. You can eat at El Tarasco in the decidedly down-rent but charming dining room, or get your food to go, perhaps for a quick walk down Washington to chow down on your burritos at the beach.
© Liz Hamill Scott from Moon California, 2nd Edition