Welcome to the Grilled Meats, Oaxaca City

The sign above the entrance reads, Bienvenidos a las Carnes Asadas.
You can’t miss this long hallway off the Viente de Noviembre market in Oaxaca. It’s filled with smoke, with fires flaring up from grills. The vendors are yelling at people passing through, trying to entice them to their stand for tacos placeros.

To find order in this chaos, a friend recently gave us the lay of the land, and we dove in for breakfast.
It goes something like this.
Walk up to a vendor that sells the salads and salsas and tell them how many people in your party.
They will then give you a basket with lovely cebollas (or knob onions), and five-alarm chile de agua.

You will then be cast out into the smoke to pick out a meat vendor for tasajo, cecina or chorizo. They will lobby hard for your business.

They’ll then take your name, your meat of choice, your chilies and onions and grill them.

Go find a seat. While you wait, a vendor will offer you refrescos. Once your grilled delights are delivered to your table, another vendor will inquire about what salads or condimentos you’d like to accompany your tacos – “rabanos, pepinos, nopales, guacamole, limon?”
Yet another vendor will appear with hot tortillas. Some vendors you will pay right away, others at the end of your meal.
Got it?
You are ready to eat. With your hands.
Buen provecho!

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