100 Tastemakers in Phoenix

Tim and Kim Cobb of United Lunchadores on The Tragedy of Under-Seasoned Food

From now until we publish the 2016 edition of Best of Phoenix, New Times is naming 100 Tastemakers — members of our local culinary community who help shape the way we eat, drink, and think about food in Phoenix. Some you'll know, and for others, it'll be a first introduction, but each person on our list deserves a nod for helping make our city so delicious. Oh, and while you're here, be sure to check out our list of 100 Creatives.

Today, the couple behind one of the Valley's most successful mobile eateries. 

86.  Tim and Kim Cobb of United Lunchadores Street Gourmet

Tim and Kim Cobb met in a restaurant and can not think of a better way to spend their happily ever after than by "breaking bread with [their] Lunchadores" every day. 

The couple started their award-winning food truck, United Lunchadores Street Gourmet (formerly Luncha Libre), back when food trucks were just starting to pop up everywhere on Valley streets. But the Cobbs have put in some 17 years in the industry in order to earn their current view. In addition to the Lunchadores food truck, the couple also operates a brick-and-mortar restaurant, The Taco and Dilla Parlor, and a dessert and snack shop called Calaveras Snack Shop.

"We have picked ourselves up more often than we would like to admit," Tim says. "But at the end of the day we try to keep with our simple philosophy: Our Lunchadores are why we do what we do, and Save the Streets from Bad Food." 

Today, the couple dishes on their go-to place for sushi and what you'll never find in their kitchen. 

My go-to place for sushi in Phoenix is Hana [Japanese Eatery]. 

The best-kept secret in Phoenix is La Purisima for green chile green burritos (get there early, they sell out quickly). 

We'd be delighted if we never ate another plate of ... going to have to plead the Fifth on specifics, but under-seasoned food can cause us to ponder the greatness that will never be. 

You'll never find a garlic press, mango pitter, or avocado scooper in our kitchen, but we can't cook without salt, salt, and more salt. 

Our culinary guilty pleasure is Nongshim Kimchi Spicy Noodles with slices of American cheese and an over-easy egg. 

The 2016 Tastemakers so far: 

100. Aaron Chamberlin of St. Francis and Phoenix Public Market Cafe
99. Ross Simon of Bitter & Twisted Cocktail Parlour 
98. Debby Wolvos of DW Photography
97. Anibal and Salem Beyene of Café Lalibela Ethiopian Restaurant 
96. Bo Mostow of Uptown Farmers Market
95. Julian Wright of Pedal Haus Brewery
94. Stephen Jones of The Larder + The Delta
93. Eric Glomski of Page Spring Cellars
92. Richard Bock of Giuseppe's on 28th
91. Walter Sterling of Ocotillo 
90. Daniel Sevilla of Angry Crab Shack
89. Doug Robson of Gallo Blanco and Otro Cafe
88. LaDawn Driscoll of Liberty Market
87. Jason Calhoon of The Shop Beer Co. and Side Kick Cold Brew