For the past year, Adriana Lemus has been the beautiful, smiling face inside of her colorful taco stand that has earned her respect and a devoted following in Topanga. Now, during the quarantine, she will deliver fresh, homemade tacos to your home on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
If you pull into Jalan Jalan on Topanga Canyon Boulevard on a weekday evening and tuck into one of La Chingona’s handmade tacos, expect the best tacos in town. Owner Adriana Lemus, who opened her taco stand in 2019, has a devoted following and is in demand for catered events, including Malibu and Beverly Hills.
La Chingona means “good” in Spanish, or today’s colloquial “bad ass,” both terms that express “the best of the best.”
After catering events and cooking privately for families in Topanga for more than 20 years, Lemus now specializes in catered parties and events featuring Guatemalan vegan, vegetarian, meat, seafood tacos, and all the fixings, which are gluten and dairy-free, and largely organic.
With her crew, including her tortilleras who make fresh, handmade tortillas, Lemus serves up delicious tacos at Jalan Jalan weeknights and on Sundays from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Before opening her stand, Lemus worked four jobs, six days a week including at Peddler’s Fork, Café Mimosa, Waterlily, Topanga Table, and the behind the Deli counter at Topanga Creek General Store.
Lemus says her taco stand is doing very well, to the point where it is now her only income, giving her much more time with her children—four-year-old Lluvia, which means “rain,” and seven-year-old son, Balam, which means “jaguar” in Mayan.
Born in Petén, in the jungle of Guatemala, Lemus moved to Topanga 19 years ago and took on many food-related jobs.