Located in the heart of Kensington market is El Trompo, a casual Mexican joint. With low prices and quick service, the place seems to be quite popular with students.
The restaurant has a hole-in-the-wall feel to it and has a small patio out front. The place was quite busy when Mike and I arrived on a Thursday evening but the tables turned over pretty quickly. The first thing I noticed after being seated at our table was the table-side sauce – one bowl of salsa verde sauce, the other a chipotle sauce. After ordering the tacos, I could see why they give us sauce…
The menu features a long list of tacos, fajitas and quesadillas. Since we came here for my taco craving, we didn’t even consider the other options. Something that caught my eye on the menu was the churros. Unfortunately they’re only served on weekends. Guess I’ll have to come back… maybe to try their brunch, which I hear is phenomenal.
Anyway, we started with the Guacamole – spicy avocado dip prepared with tomato, chili, onion and coriander, served with corn chips ($6.75). At $6.75 the price was a bit on the high side but the portion was quite substantial (don’t let that small bowl fool you) and the guac was delicious. Fresh and addictive!
We decided to order two types of tacos, our first choice being the Al Pastor Tacos – pork meat marinated in the traditional sauce ($9.75), which was labeled as their specialty on their menu. The serving came with five tacos served on corn tortillas topped with pork, pineapple, coriander and onions. Although it sounds like a lot of tacos, you could finish each one in three bites (two if you have a big mouth).
The meat had a nice flavour but I found it to be on the dry side as I prefer my tacos a little saucier. Adding a bit of chipotle sauce gave it a needed kick and the pineapples provided a nice bit of sweetness. Overall, a tasty taco!
Our second set of tacos were the Spicy Tinga Chicken Tacos – shredded chicken tacos cooked in tomato/smoked chipotle pepper sauce, topped with onions and coriander ($9.75). Like all the other taco dishes at El Trompo, this also came with five small tacos. Given that the name had “spicy” in it, I expected the tacos to have a real big kick to them which definitely wasn’t the case. The spice was quite mild and similar to the Al Pastor tacos, they were a tad on the dry side. But nothing a little bit of sauce couldn’t help.
Since we had eaten so much guacamole, we ended up taking half the tacos to go. I’m happy to report that they were still good the next day!
If you’re looking for a place to grab a quick meal, El Trompo is definitely a good choice. Quick, cheap and tasty!
At a glance:
• Casual Mexican joint in the heart of Kensington Market
• Quick service
• Reasonable prices
• Churros served on the weekends
Ratings (out of 5):
• Food: 4 stars
• Service: 3 stars
• Atmosphere: 2.5 stars