While I've enjoyed my tortas and salads at Bombon Cafe, as well as their legendary tres leches cakes (still have dreams of the mini rompope flavor), I never realized Luis Perea could also make amazing tacos. I don't mean just any tacos, like the so-called versions I've seen at some of the new "urban taquerias" or alleged late-night legends in Wicker Park and Bridgeport (here's looking at you, La Pasadita and Tacos Erendira). I mean places where they actually make the corn tortillas from scratch - thus, negating the need for stacking two thin, packaged tortillas together, when one will suffice - and assemble the little beauties with as much care and thought as those platos principales; where the filling isn't just an excuse to soak up alcohol, and the garnish goes a few steps beyond cebolla y cilantro and a bottle of Cholula hot sauce. (Yo Barrio, why even bother making flour tortillas for your seafood tacos? Your shrimp version is both anemic and embarrassing).
I say this, because I've had Perea's shrimp taco recently, at La Lagartija (the lizard), just a block South of the Bombon Cafe on Ashland. From the homemade tortilla, to the plump shrimp bathed in a Negro Modelo-infused batter, and the accompanying shredded cabbage, caper-laced aioli and ketchup-habanero that graces the top, this is a shrimp taco for the ages. Buen Provecho!
Previous post in Steve Dolinsky