Food: Tako Truk
After visiting Portland in July where we went on a food craze through the city tasting several great dishes right from street carts we were both excited to hear that Tako Truk was just down a little ways from Capitol Hill on Eastlake, set up in the evenings toward weekends out of the 14 Carrot Cafe. Tako Truk is run by Cormac Mahoney, formerly of Sitka and Spruce (across the street). We have visited Tako Truk twice. The first time they didn’t have any of their signature taco (TakoTaco) left when we arrived later in the evening so we went again; and because we heard that they change up the other taco selections frequently.
Tako Truk is open Thursday through Saturday from 6pm to 12am ,give or take a few minutes, but they usually are all out of tacos by 10pm. (Cash Only!). You can bundle the taco order, 3 for $5 or buy them solo. 5-7 of them for two keeps us happy. Tako Truk is in many ways even more simple than a street cart, in that they have no “truk” , except for a plastic toy and a make shift podium signed by visitors painted with their name. Above hangs a small sign that says Tako Truk, easily missed if you aren’t looking carefully when you drive by.
A sweet potato taco filled with a crunchy coleslaw containing two types of cabbage, and a curry-like spice. This taco surprised me in flavor. The soft sweet potatoes inside contrasted nicely with the crunchy texture of the green and red cabbage on top. Again the taco has potent spice flavors which aren’t hidden like some tacos I’ve had. We have also tried a curried eggplant with chickpeas that was decent, although not a memorable as the sweet potato option.
Their signature taco is called the Tako Taco (Tako = Octopus), which is filled with carefully grilled Octopus, carmelized onions, yogurt, and a spicy red sauce containing chorizo flavor. The tacos have a nice sourness from the yogurt, great sweetness from onion, grilled flavor and heat kick at the end.
-Pork Taco (Coco Piggy)
This was on the menu both times we visited, and we were glad it was. Piggy is filled with coconut braised pork shoulder, pork fat and bits and topped with crispy fries (sometime pork rinds) to add a crunchy texture. It was delicious on both occasions and consistently prepared each time we visited.
Again, they tend to change the contents of the beef choice frequently, but the one we had was excellent. A slow braised rich shredded beef in a sweet spicy sauce accompanied by papaya. The acid from the papaya, sweet and spicy beef, and crunch made for really fun bites.
We’ve had two types of these. The better one was the Chicken Adobo. The Adobo sauces tasted like others I’ve had, but a bit spicier which I liked. This also has been known to be topped with tiny string-like fries which add a nice crunch.
For drinks at Tako Truk they have a nice lime drink, or you can take your tacos next door to Zoo bar if you fancy a pint of beer and a game of pool. Tako Truk is a quick, cheap, and tasty spot. I wish Seattle had more creative cheap food spots like Tako Truk. I always say this, but when you go to Portland and walk the streets, sampling from cart after cart of food stuffing your belly silly, you’ll understand. The Tako Truk was allegedly a summer experiment, and might not be around for too long. That would be a loss for Seattle’s growing street food scene, so we’re hoping that they can find a permanent spot, or simply continue the good thing they have going with Carrot 14.
2305 Eastlake Ave E
Seattle, WA 98102