Tacos Oscar, the taco pop-up with a cult following in the East Bay, has landed a permanent taco destination. Partners Oscar Michel and Jake Weiss will bring fresh tortillas and their excellent fillings to 420 40th Street in the heart of Temescal sometime this fall, taking over the shipping container formerly occupied by Antidote Juicery.
The new location is housed in a shipping container with a seating area behind it, which Michel refers to as “Taco Alley,” and is located directly in the path of 40th Street foot traffic. Now that the lease is signed, Michel and Weiss will start a reconfiguration of the kitchen, which involves adding a hood and more storage. “We looked at better kitchen spaces,” said Michel. “But we do this stuff on the sidewalk most of the time.”
Michel and Weiss have been gaining momentum by springing up all over the East Bay for the past couple years, from semi-permanent gigs at Starline Social Club to the sidewalk in front of Cole Coffee in Rockridge. The duo, who became friends as cooks in the kitchen of Boot and Shoe Service, press and griddle tortillas to order, keeping things as simple and traditional as possible. Perennial crowd favorites include a soft-boiled egg taco with black beans, roasted tomato salsa, queso fresco, and pickled onions, chicken mole tacos, and quesadillas made with Michel’s special caramelization technique (he melts it facedown on the plancha).
Much like at their taco appearances around town, the menu will remain simple. Expect four different main items, like quesadillas, a meat taco, a crunchy taco, and a vegan options, plus a rotating soup, ceviche, and salad. Beer and wine will be a big bonus for the crew, who’ve relied on their hosts’ liquor licenses for booze in the past.
Stay tuned for a fall opening, and keep an eye on the Tacos Oscar Instagram for a series of 40th Street pop-ups over the summer; they’ll continue to feed fans at Starline Social Club every second and fourth Monday as well.