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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Kung Fu Tacos Serves Up Budget Fusion in the FiDi

Posted By on Tue, Aug 25, 2009 at 11:41 AM

The Mu Shu Veggies taco: Sweet and chewy.

"East meets South...of the border," claims Kung Fu Tacos, a new lunchtime taco truck that couples Asian-inspired flavors with a Latin twist. Kung Fu Tacos offers a menu that features multiple variations, including a vegetarian option, all heaped in fresh-made La Palma tortillas. Kung Fu Tacos starts serving weekdays at around 11:15 a.m., from the corner of Sansome and Jackson in the Financial District. Follow them on Twitter for updates. 

On a recent visit, we started with the Mu Shu Veggies taco ($2), which combined shiitake and cloud ear mushrooms, carrots, cabbage, cilantro, and onions. The flavor was great, like eating a miniature vegetable stir-fry. The shiitakes in particular give the taco a slightly sweet flavor and nicely chewy texture.

Lines -- and waits --can get hefty.
The Wu Shu Char Siu ($3) featured traditional glazed BBQ pork topped with mango salsa and onions. The pork was salty and sweet, as it should be, but the mango salsa overpowered the flavor of the pork a bit. A squeeze of lime helped neutralize the mango's sweetness.

The Nun Chuck Chicken ($2) brought grilled chicken marinated in garlic-ginger sauce, topped with onions, cilantro, carrots, and a spicy Asian salsa, apparently Sriracha mixed with ginger. Served in large chunks, the chicken was moist and flavorful. The spicy Asian salsa packs a lot of ginger, which -- depending on whether or not you like ginger - is either good or bad. We liked it, since it added an unexpected layer of flavor.

Nun Chuk Chicken (left) and Asian Asada tacos.
Last up was the Asian Asada ($2), grilled strips of thin steak, topped with cilantro, onions, and that spicy Asian salsa. The steak was fairly dry and bland. What flavor it did have came from the Sriracha-ginger salsa, which stood out clearly from the unremarkable steak.

Unfortunately, Kung Fu Tacos had sold out of the Roast Duck taco ($3) by the time we got there (just before 12:30 p.m.), and by only three people ahead of us in line. No wonder, since the idea of naturally fatty duck topped with mango salsa and hoisin sauce sounded great.

Overall, aside from the Asian asada, the tacos were quite flavorful, and different enough from each other to warrant future visits (especially to try the duck). The only other gripe is the long lines -- it took us about 30 minutes to order and get our tacos. But since Kung Fu Tacos has only been open a couple of weeks, we expect the lines to subside soon, once everyone has had a chance to check it out.

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Gene Miguel


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