By Bill Esparza
Introduction by Gustavo Arellano
Photos by Staci Valentine


Hardcover | $29.95
ISBN 978-1-945551-00-0
Ebook also available
ISBN 978-1-945551-01-7
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A colorful celebration of L.A.’s vibrant Mexican food scene

Richly photographed and authentically local, L.A. Mexicano showcases L.A.’s sophisticated and diverse Mexican-food culture, from Oaxacan tlayudas to Nayarit ceviches, Alta California gastronomy to Boyle Heights burritos. It’s got it all: recipes, insightful and inspirational profiles of chefs, bakers, restaurateurs, and vendors, and neighborhood guides that point readers to the best markets, taco trucks, restaurants, bars, and more. Part cookbook, part food journalism, and part love song to Los Angeles, it’s a definitive resource for home cooks, Mexican food lovers, and hungry Angelenos and visitors. With a foreword by Taco USA‘s Gustavo Arellano, L.A. Mexicano shines a long-overdue light on the people behind one of the world’s most complex and delicious cuisines, in one of the world’s most exciting food cities.

About the Author

Bill Esparza is recent winner of a James Beard award (with Lesley Bargar Suter) for his coverage of the LA taco scene in Los Angeles Magazine. Considered one of the country’s leading experts on Mexican food, the LA native curates the annual Tacolandia festival in Los Angeles; writes about Mexican food for Los Angeles Magazine and others; appears regularly on CNN, KCRW’s radio show Good Food, and such television shows as I’ll Have What Phil’s Having, Bizarre Foods, and Top Chef. A California native and noted saxophone player, Esparza has traveled and eaten extensively throughout Mexico, Latin America, and, of course, Southern California.
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Praise for L.A. Mexicano

L.A. Magazine’s 2017 Cookbook of the Year

One of New Worlder’s “Best Culinary Books of 2017”

An LAist Essential Los Angeles Cookbook

Gold Medal Winner — PubWest Design Awards

“In a world of ‘experts,’ Bill Esparza is the experts’ expert. Here, he has literally written The Book on Mexican cuisine in our town. A must for anybody who lives in, or plans on visiting, the best food city in America, Los Angeles.”
Phil Rosenthal, host of Somebody Feed Phil

“Much has been said about the great gastronomic legacy of Mexico: its richness, diversity, and sophistication. From that perspective, Bill Esparza writes about the promising future of the Mexican kitchen in Los Angeles. I could not agree more.”
Enrique Olvera, famed Mexican chef and author of Mexico From the Inside Out

“The original tacorazzo, Bill Esparza is one of the staunchest defenders of true Mexican cuisine. He’s the first one to call out an impostor and the first one to cry foul when a paisano doesn’t get the recognition he deserves. A rare voice you can trust, Bill has done the research, and he selflessly honors the true players in Mexican cuisine with no other intention other than to honor a culture and cuisine that is too often misrepresented. A must in your collection!”
Marcela Valladolid, host of the Food Network’s Mexican Made Easy and The Kitchen and author of Casa Marcela and Mexican Made Easy

“Bill Esparza’s L.A. Mexicano is the book I wish I could write. The L.A. dining scene has exploded in the last decade, fueled by the passion inspired by the Mexican community in Southern California. Esparza knows this world better than anyone, and like all great books about food, it’s both a learning adventure and a culinary inspiration for the home cook.”
Andrew Zimmern, host of such Travel Channel shows as Bizarre Foods

L.A. Mexicano is a glowing portrait of a city and the special relationship Angelenos have with Mexican food. It combines the stories behind beloved institutions with insights from cutting-edge chefs, plus all the recipes you’ve always wanted.”
Patric Kuh, restaurant critic of Los Angeles Magazine and author of Finding the Flavors We Lost

“The author champions the members of the LA food community who are reconquering their Mexican-American culinary inheritance and forging a chef culture that elevates Mexican-American cooking to its rightful place in the pantheon of great world cuisines.”
Foreword Reviews

“Bill Esparza has been hailed as ‘the expert’s expert’ in regards to his vast and unmatched knowledge of L.A’s food scene – specifically L.A.’s Mexican food scene… The definitive guide to Mexican food in Los Angeles and, along the way, it introduces the world to the people, the vendors, and the chefs behind it.”
New Worlder

L.A. Mexicano truly pays homage to Los Angeles’s Mexican food, it’s history, culture, chefs, restaurants and recipes.”
— Alicia Maher, Delicious El Salvador