While in sunny California, Cory and I had quite the hankering for tacos. Last time we were in LA, we were basically tripping over taco trucks wherever we went. This time that was not the case as we stayed in a less ‘late night’ area of town. So we did what many out-of-towners do, and hopped on Google to see what was in the area.
We ended up at Mondo Tacos in Santa Monica. The location leaves something to be desired, but the seating area fits a number of people and is designed in a relaxing manner. Think Panera Bread for tacos. The general theme of this taco joint is “tacos without borders.” That means you can order a Mexican-style taco, a taco with a Thai twist, or even a Japanese style taco. In addition to interesting flavor palettes, Mondo Tacos makes their own hand made tortillas. I can attest, they are quite tasty.
While the menu is not 100% vegan/ vegetarian, there are a variety of options. Most have tempeh or soyrizo as the base. Rather than using any soy/nut-based dairy alternatives, you can simply modify your order to include a vegan salsa or other sauce. I ordered the Tempeh Thailicious which is a nix of tempeh, chipotle peanut sauce, cilantro, and onions, as well as, the Sister Sledge made vegan with soyrizo, avocado, cilantro, jalapeño, and tomatillo sauce instead of 1000 island. Out of the two, the Sister Sledge won the gold star. The temeph taco was good, and the peanut sauce was surprising hot (in a good way), but the soyrizo was perfection and won me over on the first bite. Soyrizo can easily be either too greasy or dry, but this was a moist, chewy taco. Yum.
Overall, this is a 4 star restaurant. Give it a try if you want an interesting twist on international styled tacos at a reasonable price and you happen to be near Santa Monica.