Mexican ‘made from scratch’

El Guaco Loco’s owners also own a restaurant in the city.

El Guaco Loco’s menu features various Mexican food like tacos, nachos and tacos mixtos, which are popular among customers. | Khanya Brann TTN
El Guaco Loco’s menu features various Mexican food like tacos, nachos and tacos mixtos, which are popular among customers. | Khanya Brann TTN

Brothers Renaldo De Luna and Rafael De Luna III, co-owners of El Guaco Loco, always had a dream of owning a food truck. When the opportunity arose to purchase one four years ago, they did just that.

Rafael, who used to be an employee at Temple, saw a white, empty truck was for sale and jumped on the opportunity. The truck is parked on Montgomery Avenue between Broad and 13th streets.

Renaldo said even though they’ve had the truck for four years, it has only been in business since April of this year because they opened their restaurant, Guacamole Mex-Grill, near the University of the Sciences on Woodland Avenue near 46th Street last year.

“After we got settled in West Philly, my brother and I basically decided to retrofit and pay more attention to the food truck,” Renaldo said. “We wanted to focus more on the truck because that was always our goal. We wanted to be more mobile.”

Renaldo said the name for the truck, El Guaco Loco, was inspired by their restaurant. The logo, a luchador wrestling mask, was inspired by a love of Mexican wrestling.

El Guaco Loco serves a mixture of traditional Mexican dishes like tacos, burritos and guisado, a stew. The truck’s mole sauce is “made from scratch with over 30 ingredients,” Renaldo said.

The De Luna family has been in the mole-making business for over 60 years.

“Right now, for lunch, we have three guisados—chicken and mole, pork and green salsa, and beef and red salsa, which is chili guajillo,” he said. “With those meats, you can put it in anything. You can put it in your burritos, your tacos, your quesadilla and your nachos.”

Renaldo said most of the food is made from scratch at their restaurant, then brought to and prepared in the truck.

Along with those items, El Guaco Loco’s breakfast items include burritos, tacos and quesadillas with egg, bacon and potatoes—all served with the mole. Renaldo said the chicken and mole has sold the best since its opening, and they want to provide fresh corn and flour tortillas.

The truck is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., but the brothers want to eventually be more readily available to students with later classes.

“We have hopes of staying open later to cater to the after-school demographic of Temple,” Renaldo said.

“You can go to any other restaurant,” he added. “You can get the burrito, the taco, the quesadilla and other things from a restaurant. But keep in mind that everything is made from scratch at our truck. It’s about freshness.”

Ashley Caldwell can be reached at

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