Nothing goes better before, during or after art-viewing than shredded, slow-cooked pork served on warm hand-made corn tortillas. Or in more general terms: pork tacos make everything in life better. Either way, my wife and I were pleased to see a small food cart parked on the corner of 12th and Acoma outside the Denver Art Museum a few weeks ago on a Sunday.
The cart was actually a trailer called "La Casita". Not associated with the famous Denver Tamales By La Casita empire, this La Casista was rather a humble portable food stand manned by a single cook. The menu was simple: tacos, burritos, tortas and a spattering of other typical taco-truck fare.
It was just getting set up when we got to the museum, so unfortunately we didn't actually get to enjoy art and tacos exactly at the same time (nor would the museum likely approve of such indulgences). It was on the way out that we stopped and ordered: pork tacos and smothered steak burrito.
It was a little cold out and our babies were not happy in the wind, so we headed to our car parked nearby to eat. We put the babies in their seats, shoved bottles in their respective mouths and dug in.
Our babies, busy sucking away on their milk and gazing out the windows had no idea what they were missing. Each taco in our order of two came con copia, or with two tortillas, and enough lovely pulled pork so that we easily made four tacos. As I said, the pork was indeed lovely: simple and slow-cooked, tender and flavorful. And the tortillas seemed hand-made and fresh. They were very good tacos. I was impressed.
The burrito was next. It came all smothered in green chile on a thin paper plate. Needless to say, it was challenging to eat in the car with a single plastic fork, but somehow we managed like we always do. The green chile was good, not particularly meaty or spicy, but with a nice flavor. The shredded beef was a little chewy, and the rest of the fillings (rice, beans, cheese, etc) standard. It was an average smothered burrito. There are many, many other worse things than that.
There aren't many great options around the museum unless you like salad, but it is hard to fuel up sufficiently for a museum day on rabbit food, so it is nice to see a portable option serving up above average tacos and a decent smothered burrito.
Thinking back a year or two, I did once have some portable food from the Deluxe truck outside the museum, but we all know how that went, so hopefully La Casita will continue the art+food+wheels tradition and more will follow. Our kids love the art museum--which means we love it even more now--so I doubt that will be my last meal at La Casita food cart.
Note: I have been back to the museum twice since this post on the weekend and have yet to see La Casita again. If you really want to find them, they make the farmer's market rounds in the summer and can be found on the world wide web: http://lacasita1.blogspot.com/
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