Shell-Shocked 

A Quick Jolt of Tasty Tacos

Let's face it. Time is money. For that matter, money is money, and sometimes you need to save on both. Like when you want a deliciously simple taco, but you don't want to pay an arm and a leg for it, and you don't want to wait an arm and a leg for it (ever had to wait an entire arm and leg? It sucks.). Who needs Por Qué No anyway? There are a plethora of cheap, fast taco joints that'll fill you up in a hurry without breaking your bank.

Tito's
SW Washington & 2nd

A friend first pointed this taco truck out to me upon my move to Portland. She said, "Not only are the tacos fucking good, Tito is one of the nicest taco truck proprietors this side of the Mississippi." She was right. Tito slow cooks his meats and beans before they even go into the shells, and you bet your fat ass you can taste it as they drip down your throat. If you are having a bad day in downtown Portland, this is the food to induce a revival of all your lulled senses. I highly recommend anything pollo on the menu. KYLE LARSON

Taqueria Lindo Michoacan
SE Division & 34th

Across the street from where I work and three blocks from where I live, this taco truck has saved me from numerous Wednesday morning hangovers, which we all know are the worst. Plus, they serve goat meat and have a giant picnic table setup for those folks like you and I who wish to savor the full taco-truck experience. Or if tacos aren't your thing, Lindo Michoacan's chorizo quesadilla is unmatched in its protein-restorative qualities, and the Super Burritos are the size of a small child. KL

The Slammer
500 SE 8th, 232-6504, tacos only on Wednesdays

The lovable Slammer is about the size of my thumbnail, with just enough room for the basics: cheap beer, cheap wine, and every Wednesday, extraordinarily cheap tacos. "Three for a dollar!" proclaims the sign, and it ain't kidding around. The taco bar contained within, with its bulk-rate crunchy shells, vat o' mysteriously seasoned meat, and canned refried beans, is anything but gourmet, but who ever wanted a gourmet taco anyway? It's ONE DOLLAR for THREE TACOS, people! Jesus! (Oh, and when visiting the Slammer's taco bar, it's best to model your actions on Ramona Quimby's grandmother's old adage in Beverly Cleary's popular children's book Ramona and Her Father: "First time is funny. Second time is silly. Third time's a spanking..." on your ass!) JUSTIN WESCOAT SANDERS

Super Torta
5640 SE Woodstock, 788-3650

As any tried-and-true Portlander knows, any restaurant in deep Southeast (barring those in quaint and beautiful Sellwood, of course) should be approached with trepidation. Are they cooking meth behind the counter? Has the business been open more than one day this week? In short, deep Southeast is sketchy, but I assure you Super Torta is the opposite. This mellow little Mexican taco joint makes one tasty, saucy steak taco, one savory chicken, and a rich, fatty lengua (tongue) taco if you're man enough to try it. I'm not a huge fan of their pork tacos, but that's really just because, to me, pork always rates below beef—what can I say? Call in your order and they'll have it ready in less than five minutes, so be prepared. KATIE SHIMER

Catalina's
517 NE Killingsworth, (503) 288-5911

Catalina's is known for their aircraft carrier-sized platters of coma-inducing food, but the real gem here is their on-the-fly taco window that appears to be custom-made for skateboarding or bicycling duck-ins. You can just roll up and order two or three tacos and be on your way. Since Catalina's does the Baja seafood thing so well, I like to order a couple of freshly made fish tacos. The fish is grilled and served with a heat-packing red salsa. They also make a mean beef taco, using the superior shredded beef instead of ground beef. Or try a torta, a delicious sandwich built on fresh baked bread featuring things like ham, eggs, and fresh avocado. Make mine to go! LANCE CHESS

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