the french taco

10/7/2021 ☼ Food

i went off the mountain today by one of the many available winding roads, eventually to wash up in the nearest big city to do all the things one cannot do in depopulated and crumbly hamlets: get a Covid PCR test, eat food cooked by someone else, do the laundry, buy replacement bolts of a precise thread pitch, pick up a case of essential beverages, try a french taco.

in april, the new yorker ran a long investigative essay about the unlikely rise of the french taco. select summary:

  1. the french taco is unrecognizable as an actual taco;
  2. it seems to be an identitarian food that recalls or, more accurately, constructs a prelapsarian time for people in many marginalised demographics;
  3. it has become an absurdly popular fast food category and spawned french taco tycoons.

basically, this thing is an extra-large flat-toasted burrito stuffed with highly seasoned chopped mystery meat, fries, and cheese and other sauces. i immediately and viscerally understood the appeal of the french taco and the mechanism of its success. it is not a coincidence that flavor enhancer in french is both exhausteur du goût and exaltateur d’arôme.

for these many months, i have resisted the urge to hunt down a french taco but it was a foregone conclusion that eventually the urge for Knowledge would triumph. so when the distinctively bland O’Tacos logo hove into view today next to the pharmacy that was my destination, i knew the game was up.

about this matter, let no more be said.