KCRW and Gustavo Arellano’s Tortilla Tournament returns! Four finalists will face off live for a virtual celebration of all things tortilla October 18. RSVP here!
Every tortilla has a story, and every tortillería has multiple tales. For KCRW and Gustavo's Great Tortilla Tournament, that's more than 50 stories every year!
One day, we'll get around to telling them all. But this year, with acclaimed L.A. storyteller Samanta Helou Hernandez, we're going in depth for three contestants: Playa Azul Tortilleria, El Ruso, and Bar Amá, all similar yet vastly different.
This small mercadito (neighborhood market) has served the Florence and Nadeu neighborhoods of South L.A. for at least 20 years. They sell flour tortillas from local makers, but handmakes delicious, small corn ones daily to go alongside their excellent carnitas. Their head tortillera (female tortilla maker) is Angelina Gomez, originally from Jalisco.
1901 Nadeau St, Los Angeles, CA 90001
This East LA taco truck is rightfully acclaimed for Julia Silva's Sonora-style flour tortillas (and makes underrated corn ones, too). But on weekends, they bring out the state's legendary sobaqueras — flour tortillas the length of an adult arm. They use them for burritos that hold delicious carne asada, chorizo, and even mole.
Joseph Centeno's ode to his Tex-Mex roots offers fluffy flour tortillas that come from his aunt's recipe. And in a totally LA move, his head tortillero (male tortilla maker) is from Oaxaca.
118 W. 4th St, Los Angeles, CA 90013