I'd heard so much about the food at the Mariscos German taco truck in North Park that I thought I'd better give it a go, if only to solve the mystery behind the name. A German taco, I thought, probably has bratwurst instead of fish or chicken and sauerkraut in place of lettuce. Leave it to some red-blooded American entrepreneur to reinvent the wheel and make a killing, defacing an iconic piece of Mexican culture in the process. Heck, how would he like it if his matzoh ball soup came back with a baseball where the dumplings should be?
Silly, fat little me. turns out that “German” is pronounced “hairmonn”—it's just part of the place's proper name, the same way the noisy auto shop across the street is part of its character. But call it whatever nationality you want; you'll not find a better seafood taco for the money (or, for that matter, for your companion). The ceviche, marlin and octopus (octopus!) entries are a steal at around $3 (and you can get a plain ol' fish taco for a buck!)—but save room for the colossal gobernador, with its jumbo shrimp, cheese, peppers and smoked pork. For $5, you could (and most likely will) get a lot less anywhere else; even the shells are worth the price amid their fluffy texture and floury taste. The complimentary consommé is a nice touch in such an austere setting, as is the almost overly friendly service.
Strangely, this place doesn't post its prices on its menu; the figures I gave you are the costs I was charged on my visits. But, trust me, it doesn't matter amid all the obvious attention to the food at this little taqueria at 3504 University Ave. (there are also concessions in Ocean Beach, Clairemont, City Heights, Logan Heights and Chula Vista). Call 619-392-2351 for the skinny, but do it between business hours (9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily). Meanwhile, if you still have a hankerin' for German food, you are definitely in the wrong place.