Married couple opens taco restaurant in Lakewood with emphasis on veggies

Rachel Brown Image
Friday, May 31, 2024
Str8 Up Tacos in Lakewood has special focus on veggies
This taco shop in Lakewood may have you swapping out your asada burrito for their black bean tacos.

LAKEWOOD, Calif. (KABC) -- Welcome to Str8 Up Tacos in Lakewood! A restaurant where customers can get a taste of some tasty tacos.

Str8 Up Tacos is owned by husband and wife Christopher Ruiz and Lachelle Robinson.

"He loved my food. He pushed me where he made me feel like I was on a pedestal and made me feel like I could do anything in the world," said Robinson.

Six years ago, Ruiz was vegan, and Robinson a vegetarian. Together, they decided to open Str8 Up Tacos with an emphasis on the veggies.

Chickpea nachos, fried cauliflower tacos, mushroom and Brussel sprouts are just a few of the many options at their restaurant.

"They'll try it and they love it. And then I'm like, 'See I told you you like vegetarian tacos,'" said Robinson.

Ruiz and Robinson say their most popular taco is the black bean pepper.

The dish is made up of fried yellow chili pepper, with a black bean corn mix, cotija cheese and a creamy cilantro dressing. But a warning for customers: once they try it they might be hooked forever.

"They'll come back weeks later and they'll go from eating four asada steak burritos to now eating four black bean pepper, green potato tacos," said Ruiz.

"It's happened so many times," Robinson added.

Another delicious taco on their menu is the crispy potato taco.

It's a simple taco composed of a crunchy tortilla with a fried potato, a little salsa and a yummy avocado garlic sauce.

But it's not all veggies at this restaurant. Meat lovers can order steak, chicken, pork and fish too.

Customers looking for a drink can try one of Ruiz's fresh juices and horchata.

The married couple, along with the help and support of Robinson's father, have worked hard to build something big.

Just last year, Str8 Up Tacos ranked 21 on Yelp's Top 100 US Taco Spots.

"I feel so special, blessed. It just makes it that much more rewarding to come here every day and give the best versions of ourselves," said Ruiz.

They say that working with their best friend each day is an added bonus.

"The premise of all problems being solved always is, 'You're right I love you baby.' Keep it simple," laughed Ruiz.

Str8 Up Tacos is located at 20900 Pioneer Blvd and open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Thank you Kelly for the submission!