If La Lucha’s name does not give itself away, then its counter could only overemphasize that it is in fact a food joint serving Mexican food. It is nonetheless, a welcome addition in Juana Osmeña, a street that bisects Mango’s seedy bars and Baseline’s newer restaurants in Cebu City’s midtown district.
I was hoping that Jorge Barrita, the Mexican owner, was around to walk me through the menu. He wasn’t, so it took me awhile to decide what to order. I was torn between a burrito, a taco or a quesadilla. “What should be the more ‘Mexican choice’ in an already very Mexican menu,” I asked myself.
After a good few minutes, I settled for a super taco – beans, rice, salsa, cheese, guacamole, sour cream and my choice of meat. The latter, by this time, was a no-brainer.
“Lengua,” I said to the cheerful waitstaff before finding a seat.
Beef tongue, in my unimportant opinion, should test whether a taquiera knows what it is doing. Done right, it should be unctious and tender. Done wrong, it’s chewy to the point of being inedible. And you certainly don’t want that on your taco.
My ‘beef tongue super taco’ by the way, was utterly fantastic. The lengua cuts were cooked just right, almost melting in my mouth, along with the savory flavors of the guacamole, sour cream and cheese.
I was told that they use Monterey Jack, which did not overpower the taco’s overall taste. Fans of tacos with too much grated Eden cheese, might hopefully turn from their wayward ways once they visit La Lucha.
The waitstaff would later explain that ‘La Lucha’ means ‘struggle.’ I don’t know what Jorge is struggling with, but what I do know is that it did not show up in my taco. It was a happy, unstressed and very delicious one, might I add.