Sundown in Taco Town: Taqueria Chihuahua Closes in Santa Monica; Bandini Concludes The Great Taco Hunt

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All dressed up with nowhere to go. Photo: LWY/Flickr

L.A. is typically able to stay well ahead of any hemorrhaging in its legendary taco scene, with fresh traditional and chef-driven taquerias, as well as new sites of taco-worship, materializing out of the blogosphere and city streets every week. Sadly, two stalwarts of the scene are going the way of the dodo, at least in the forms that we've come to recognize them in. Santa Monica's Taqueria Chihuahua, which has moved locations a couple of times since it's inception on Olympic 30-years ago, has been forcibly removed from it's Lincoln Blvd. location in Santa Monica, shutting down after corporate powers finally acted on threats to displace the restaurant for a new tenant. The taqueria, which is prized for its lengua, if not exactly a comprehensively satisfying menu, survives in Marina del Rey, where it opened a second location last fall.

In another taco take down, Bandini, the blogger behind The Great Taco Hunt, L.A.'s first taco exploration and reviewing blog, has decided to call it quits. Late last month, the scribe announced that he was "throwing in the tortilla," claiming that "Taco blogging is a young man's game. The taco scene has been changing so fast in LA and I no longer have my pulse on it (if I ever did). And I don't have it in me for a third-act."

Bandini, who reveals his real name to KCET (he's really 39-year-old Andy O'Neill, and sadly not the great Angeleno of Fante literature fame), simply says he's lost his mojo when it comes to taco scouting, though fans can look forward to a new direction, as he now controls a Tumblr called "All Your Burritos Are Belong To Me," dissecting local tortilla-wrapped monstrosities.

Before riding off into the sunset, the blogger signs off with a truly poignant, "Fuck you Taco Bell!" For L.A. taco fans, truer words have never been spoken.