Food & Drink

Review: Bmore Taquería Makes Every Day Trompo Tuesday

Chef/owner Valentino Sandoval uses a vertical rotisserie spit to shave tender meat for his signature al pastor tacos.
Chef/owner Valentino Sandoval. —Photography by Justin Tsucalas

Walk through the bright red Fells Point storefront and grab a seat at Bmore Taquería’s counter bar, and you’ll likely see owner Valentino Sandoval standing at the grill next to the massive trompo—that’s the vertical rotisserie spit—that looks like a conical pork lollipop.

It’s from there that Sandoval, Bmore Taquería’s chef and owner, shaves the tender meat for the al pastor tacos, loading house-made corn tortillas with small mountains of the succulent pork, then topping them with onions, cilantro, thin spears of julienned radish, and fresh pineapple.

Al pastor tacos aren’t the only specialty of Sandoval’s hometown of Puebla, Mexico, a vibrant city southeast of Mexico City. “My hometown is popular for tacos árabes,” says Sandoval of the regional dish, which is similar but distinct: the same shaved pork, but hit with lemon juice and parsley and served on a flour tortilla with rich, mahogany-dark chipotle sauce.

Sandoval hasn’t started making those just yet (“I’m going to put it on the menu in the future”), as the taqueria, which recently got a license to serve beer and wine, has only been open since December.

Tacos al pastor. —Justin Tsucalas
The flan at Bmore Taqueria. —Justin Tsucalas

The 850-foot-square space is bright and cozy, with white-tiled walls and colorful Mexican art. Sit down and a server will bring just-fried chips in metal buckets lined with festive red-and-white paper, accompanied by bottles of red and green salsa, also made in-house. (The green is a blend of jalapeños, onions, and avocado, while the red is a blend of ancho and habanero chiles that’s at once kicky and deeply flavorful.)

Sandoval’s menu includes a roster of excellent tacos alongside the al pastor, consisting of house-made chorizo, first-rate ribeye, and nopales—that’s edible cactus—he sources from the Mexican market across the street. The chef hasn’t stopped there: There’s a bright, acid-tart ceviche; quesadillas made with that chorizo and oozy cheese; a massive torta stuffed with queso Oaxaca, meat, and veggies; and sopes packed with beans and cheese.

Move down the menu and you’ll see the dishes that showcase Sandoval’s fine-dining past: a crab empanada and a glorious, rich version of a quesadilla filled with huitlacoche—known as Mexican truffle—and topped with truffle sour cream. Before embarking on his taqueria project, Sandoval and his three brothers opened the still-thriving La Calle downtown in 2018. Previously, the chef cooked at Corner Charcuterie in Hampden, and under chef Marc Vetri in Philadelphia.  “That was my fine-dining kick in the butt,” Sandoval says.

The other thing that distinguishes Bmore from your average taqueria is that it has a small but terrific dessert menu, including a chocolate mousse and an impossibly rich flan. This is the same flan that Sandoval made at La Calla, a disc of dense, caramelly custard that is best not shared.


BMORE TAQUERÍA, 1733 Eastern Ave., 443- 873-8973. HOURS: Mon.-Wed. 4 p.m.-midnight. Thurs-Sat. noon-1 a.m. PRICES: Appetizers and sandwiches: $7-13; tacos: $8-12; desserts: $5.