On July 16, 1769, the first California mission, San Diego de Alcala, was founded by Father Junipero Serra on what is now known as Presidio Hill in San Diego County. It would become the first in a link of 21 missions along the "El Camino Real" (or Royal Highway) that follows the state's coastline. Each served a specific purpose relative to its geographic landscape and the indigenous people who populated the area.
I know what you're thinking...why am I bringing up a history lesson on a food blog? Well, if it wasn't for our son's recent 4th grade mission project, he would not have been inspired to visit as many missions as we can travel to, and we would not have come across Señor Pedro’s Tacos in San Juan Capistrano.
A walk-up taco stand located right across the street from the mission, Senor Pedro's Tacos has been a popular city mainstay for visitors and locals alike. In fact, it has quite a following, noting in particular the sticker on one of their windows stating "People love us on Yelp!"
And what's not to love. The menu is extensive, offering hearty portions of good Mexican food from an assortment of made-to-order tacos, enchiladas, and burritos to specialty favorites including tamales, tortas, pasoles, and fresh menudo. They even have vegetarian offerings and dessert.
Now, don't come here thinking that you can place an order and expect to pay with plastic. They don't accept Visa or Mastercard, and American Express is not welcome here. Senor Pedro's Tacos only accepts cash, but no worries if your billfold feels a bit light, prices are on the inexpensive side, meaning that their aim is not to scare you away. Rather, the idea is to slow down and let the hustle and bustle pass on by.
And at that moment, for us at least, it was time to relax on their patio and share in the good food before us. Thank goodness for 4th grade school projects!
Señor Pedro's Tacos
31721 Camino Capistrano
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675