Carnitas El Momo

Terrific news for anyone who craves fried pork like we do: After years of operating from a taco truck, Carnitas El Momo—home to our favorite carnitas in LA—just opened a casual counter-service restaurant in Monterey Park (look for the freshly painted pig murals on the side of the building). They’ve added some items to the menu, including a torta ahogada drowned in spicy chile sauce, mulitas and quesadillas with crispy cheese skirts, and a weekends-only goat birria. But even with all that newness, you should still focus on the classic Michoacan-style carnitas tacos, which are so obscenely rich they need little embellishment beyond a dab of salsa verde and some pickled jalapenos. Pick your cut (shoulder, belly, skin, burnt ends, or mixed “Aporkalypse” style) and watch them pile chopped bits of fat-simmered pork onto warm tortillas, then try not to drip any of those precious pig juices on your shirt. Make sure you try the fresh-fruit agua frescas, too. The “todo verde”—a refreshing lime-mint-cucumber blend—is a bonafide thirst quencher.

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