Going on a Carnitas Crawl

Craving carnitas, Robert Lu set out on a quest. Here are the notes from his top picks:

La Blanquita: Terrific carnitas taco, chunky instead of stringy, crispy outside, melt-in-your-mouth inside. Kind of a dive, but lots of aguas frescas and alambre too for those who miss Las Ruinas. Restaurant is separate from market/tortilleria.

La Pradera: Crispy and smoky, yet still moist. Solid. It’s a market only, so carnitas are sold to go.

El Gallito: Similar carnitas to La Pradera, maybe less smoky. Interior of this market (which holds a sizable restaurant) is more pleasant than most.

Pastor’s Meat: Haven’t tried yet, but friend swears they are the best carniceria around. [Adds Neta: you have to try the chicharron!]

Cinco Puntos is another great spot for carnitas, says K*, with great handmade tortillas, too.

condiment* prefers the great Antojitos Denise’s on Olympic, where they sell carnitas by the pound. It’s about as good as it gets–a party in a tray.

At La Azteca, carnitas + still-warm fresh tortillas = taco bliss, says Macdonald.

And of course, there’s always Carnitas Michoacan.

La Blanquita Tortilleria [East LA-ish]
11859 Valley Blvd., Garvey El Monte
626-579-1799
Locator: http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9321267&ck=1839410855

La Pradera Market [East LA-ish]
3218 Santa Anita Ave., El Monte
626-579-2517
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9322952&ck=864760269

La Pradera Market [South OC]
2801 S Bristol St., Santa Ana
714-662-1234
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=24076182&ck=816735867

La Pradera Carniceria [Inland of LA]
651 E. Arrow Hwy., Azusa
626-339-3000
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=14644943&ck=2485124216

El Gallito Meat Market [East LA-ish]
12242 Valley Blvd., Durfee, El Monte
626-442-1190
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9320771&ck=1798802208

Pastor’s Meat [East LA-ish]
8922 Beverly Blvd., Rosemead, Pico Rivera
562-695-8714
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9175158&ck=2447128281

Los Cinco Puntos [East LA-ish]
3300 E. Cesar E. Chavez Ave., Los Angeles
323-261-4084
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9082568&ck=1124055037

Antojitos Denises [Thai Town]
4930 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles
323-661-8230
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9049111&ck=801011488

Antojitos Denises [East LA-ish]
4060 E. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles
323-264-8199
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9039903&ck=3338204706

La Azteca Tortilleria [East LA-ish]
4538 E. Cesar E. Chavez Ave., Los Angeles
323-262-5977
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=16128927&ck=1203164291

Carnitas Michoacan [East San Fernando Valley]
12911 Victory Blvd., Coldwater Canyon, North Hollywood
818-765-9356
Map:

http://maps.yahoo.com/py/maps.py?Pyt=Tmap&addr=+12911+Victory+Blvd&csz=North+Hollywood+CA

Carnitas Michoacan [East San Fernando Valley]
7206 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood
818-982-8660
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=22496154&ck=3131189738

Carnitas Michoacan [East LA-ish]
741 S. Soto St., Los Angeles
323-266-7188
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9040318&ck=499682980

Carnitas Michoacan [Koreatown]
1605 S. Hoover St. #105, Los Angeles
213-748-1809
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9009099&ck=2301381313

Carnitas Michoacan [East San Fernando Valley]
8729 Sunland Blvd., Sun Valley
818-504-9154
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=25945522&ck=178240713

Carnitas Michoacan [East San Fernando Valley]
15039 Roscoe Blvd., Panorama City
818-830-1196
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=19407056&ck=1257323505

Carnitas Michoacan [East San Fernando Valley]
14534 Brand Blvd., San Fernando
818-365-9044
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=16843382&ck=3413739990

Carnitas Michoacan [East San Fernando Valley]
13189 Gladstone Ave., Sylmar
818-367-3269
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9256347&ck=3665692269

Carnitas Michoacans [West San Fernando Valley]
6764 Tampa Ave., Reseda
818-343-3240
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9253868&ck=2827263188

Carnitas Michoacan [East San Fernando Valley]
13947 Foothill Blvd., Sylmar
818-362-7472
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9256345&ck=3665692271

Carnitas Michoacan [West San Fernando Valley]
8556 Reseda Blvd., Northridge
818-576-0359
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=20037980&ck=2011223098

Carnitas Michoacan [West San Fernando Valley]
9101 De Soto Ave., Chatsworth
818-725-2612
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9242656&ck=1468629959

Carnitas Michoacan [West San Fernando Valley]
9849 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Chatsworth
818-700-9776
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=9243962&ck=2970576526

Carnitas Michoacan [West San Fernando Valley]
492 E. High St., Moorpark
805-553-9340
Locator:

http://yp.yahoo.com/py/ypMap.py?Pyt=Typ&tuid=13224666&ck=897949297

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Carnitas y Carnicerias