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World Wide Tacos: Soul Food Worth the Wait

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By Eddie North-Hager/ Special to LAist

Sometimes near the corner of Arlington Boulevard and Martin Luther King Jr, Boulevard you’ll see them huddled outside in the dim of the fluorescent light. They aren’t there to smoke a cigarette and it’s not an Alcoholicos Anonimos meeting.

Soul food tacos are the objects they desire.

They are waiting for one of Fredrick Sennie’s World Wide Tacos. This place, also known as Best in the West Tacos and King Tacos, has more names than P-Diddy. There’s no indoor or outdoor seating and it can be 90 minutes for two tacos. At least now they will call you when your order is ready. Individuals still can’t preorder.

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The regulars who forget to leave their phone number or first-timers end up waiting in the parking lot. They stare at the white ticket stub with their number on it as if it was a lottery ticket because any taco you wait an half hour for is a very valuable taco. These tacos are worth the wait. No matter how much you swear that you’ll never wait that long again for a taco, eventually you will come back. You can’t get these anywhere else.

It starts with a menu of more than 150 different tacos. Turkey pastrami. Vegetarian barbecue "chicken". Ground lamb. Vegetarian orange "duck". Belizean shrimp. Mango chicken. Vegetarian teriyaki "chicken". Grilled crab. Potatoes and cheese. The list is like three-feet tall. That’s not including the very tasty sandwiches and hamburgers and burritos.