Thermidor's 'Tasty Tacos' Stand
Thermidor's been taking advantage of the Indian summer -- well, what little of an Indian summer we've had -- to set out a fleet of chairs and tables in Mint Plaza. Last week, they added a cooking stand that appears at irregular intervals and announces itself via Twitter. Begun during market days, the stand pops up here and there, and right now it alternates between selling tacos and fried chicken sandwiches. Last Friday, when SFoodie spotted the tweet, it was tacos: $3 per taco, or two for $5.
The tacos, with fried U-shaped shells, are definitely gringo-style -- filled with pinto beans as well as carnitas, crowned with a pale green fringe of lime-brightened cabbage slaw and nuggets of queso fresco. But each of the components are well made: The shredded pork, its edges still crisp, has the concentrated lardiness of a long cooking in pork fat. The beans look undercooked until you bite into them, when they go all creamy, and the squiggle of salsa verde on top of the taco has a piercing, vegetal heat to it. Around Fifth and Market, a $5 lunch usually means a slice of execrable pizza and a large soda -- so the appeal of a pair of fresh, vegetable-filled tacos is considerable.
For an extra buck, you can pick up a small plastic glass of horchata, walk over to the bank of chairs set up in the sunniest spot between the Old Mint and restaurant row, and tilt your head back for a while. Better go now -- in another month, your chance will be gone.