The best thing I ate at ACL 2014

 
 
By Mike Sutter | Fed Man Walking | 10.11.14
 
 The Scallywag taco ($6) from Torchy's Tacos
 
Last year at the Austin City Limits Festival, Torchy’s surprised me with the Trailer Park, a fried chicken taco as hot and crisp as its restaurant counterpart. It was like they forgot ACL was a turn-and-burn free-for-all. Well, forget all that. The Scallywag is even better. Not just a little better. It’s the best thing I ate at ACL 2014. It’s a sometime Taco of the Month at Torchy’s, a celebration of fried shrimp from a coconut grove, stranded with Cap'n Crunch on an ocean whose currents brought together unlikely drifters: peach jam, chopped green chiles, crumbled bacon, pickled pink onion and jack cheese. Hot and cool, crunchy and soft, spicy and sweet. The assembled product is the Wilson moment from “Castaway,” when we know he’s not alone anymore, and peach jam is the bonfire, visible from anywhere in the park, drawing ships straight to the Torchy’s booth, the best beachside concession stand in this part of the ACL ocean. We take Torchy’s for granted because there are lots of shops and not enough waiting in line. But the food they brought to ACL — the Scallywag, green chile pork tacos, green chile queso and chips, tangy Mexican street corn — made the case for celebrating Torchy’s like a festival all year long.
 
(Photos by Mike Sutter © Fed Man Walking)
 
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