As a New Yorker, it’s hard for me to say anything in Los Angeles is better than in New York, but without a doubt, Ricky’s Fish Tacos are the best fish and shrimp tacos I’ve ever had. Nothing in New York even comes close.
On Day 5, before the hodduk, and before a hike up Runyon Canyon, David and I went to Ricky’s Fish Tacos, a taco stand in a parking lot in Silver Lake. We got there exactly at noon and Ricky was still setting up, but there were already two groups ahead of us, which left us one table. There are only three tables in the lot. It’s best to get there early to beat the crowds and also before Ricky sells out. Check @RickysFishTacos for the latest updates. When we were getting ready to leave, the place was packed and a group pounced on our table before I could even get up.
On most days, there are only two kinds of tacos at Ricky’s, fish and shrimp. Some days he has lobster, but unfortunately Day 5 was not one of those days. Not a big deal though, we each had one lobster and one shrimp taco and we were both more than pleased. Now, why were these tacos so good? Well, first, everything is freshly fried so everything is hot, golden, and wonderfully crunchy. Second, the fried exterior actually has flavor. A lot of places don’t season their batter. I don’t know why. I guess they assume the salsa on top will take care of it, but I like flavor. Layer it on! Ricky does exactly that with salt, Mexican oregano, and a few other spices. Chili pepper, perhaps? Third, the seafood is fresh and well-cooked. Both the shrimp and fish (catfish) were meaty and tender.
Fourth, size. Take a look at the picture above (shrimp in the front, fish in the back). In each taco, the fish and shrimp extends across the entire plate. The pieces were huge! Quality and portion-size don’t usually go hand-in-hand, but at Ricky’s it does. Topped with shredded cabbage, pico de gallo, a squirt of crema, and salsa of your choice (mild verde, medium roja, or spicy chipotle), it doesn’t get better. Along with the tacos at the Kogi Truck, this was easily one of my favorite bites from the trip.
As for drinks, there’s water and soda, but there’s also Ricky’s homemade aguas frescas. Flavors rotate daily. When I was there it was spinach and mint, and it was quite refreshing with just a touch of sweetness.
I mentioned quality and quantity, but what about price? The total for four tacos, two sodas, and one agua fresca was $16. It was a triple win situation.
Ricky’s Fish Tacos
1400 N Virgil Ave (at Delongpre Ave; map)
Los Angeles, CA 90029