Munch goes to the California Taco Shop

February 16, 2012 12:10 pm

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Here's a shocking window into the creative process at Munch Inc. LLC.: It's never about the food.

To the contrary, having written in the neighborhood of 800 reviews since 1996, Munch has eaten every permutation of pizza, pierogies, pop and Pad Thai possible, not to mention enough burgers, beer, wings and deep-fried things to keep the statin-industrial complex in business for decades.

Clearly, the only thing that Munch likes more than food is more food. But the writing's the thing, and the way to find serenity now and avoid insanity later when churning out these weekly opuses is to have a cutesy hook to start the column ... Ready. To. Go. Otherwise, calamity ensues ...

To wit: Munch was excited to check out the California Taco Shop in Overbrook. Heard good buzz about the place on the Web, and coming on the heels of a recent visit to another great taco shop in Beechview, Munch was all set with a lead (or "lede" as we in the industry like to misspell it) about the "taco wars" in District 4, in which Munch would crack wise about city government.

That is until Munch learned -- about an hour before deadline -- that the place is actually not in Overbrook, but Whitehall. Outside the city limits, in the suburbs -- by about 10 lousy feet on Route 51. Feh! Munch's "lede" lay ruined. Because while mentions of Pittsburgh's mayoral administration can be punctuated with a Nelson Muntz laugh, you try that with esteemed Whitehall Mayor and 17-year incumbent James Nowalk. He's also president of the Pennsylvania State Mayors' Association! The man is a South Hills institution!

So, it appears, after all, that Munch will have to actually talk about the food at the California Taco Shop.

¡Por fin!

Though the stretch of Route 51 it's located on could pass for a backdrop in "The Road," California Taco Shop, a nice little family-owned place opened a few months ago in a former pizza joint, does its best to brighten the area with something new and tasty.

First Published 2012-02-15 23:29:21

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