Fresno Beehive

Got taco on your T-shirt? We’ve been doing that for years

This T-shirt from the Fresno Grizzlies sums up the city’s relationship with tacos. According to the Wall Street Journal, tacos are a big trend in fashion.
This T-shirt from the Fresno Grizzlies sums up the city’s relationship with tacos. According to the Wall Street Journal, tacos are a big trend in fashion.

Fresno doesn’t typically lead fashion trends.

So, it’s an odd feeling when the Wall Street Journal does a story on the rise of the tacos in fashion and it’s old news.

The central San Joaquin Valley been rockin’ taco gear for two years, at least.

“Tacos have gone from one of America’s most popular restaurant foods to a serious fashion statement,” writes Anne-Marie Chaker in the WSJ story, which quotes design professionals, marketing reports and a taco-obsessed 30-something, from Illinois of all places. She’s not wrong.

“A $59 tank top from Los Angeles-based clothing brand Chaser reads ‘tacos are my life.’ New York-based Nylon Media’s online store sells taco-themed jewelry and sunglasses while Kate Spade offers a $358 purse in the shape of a taco truck,” Chaker writes.

We’d add to that list the Deadpool/taco mashup of a T-shirt, which you can buy at Target.

On Chaker’s timeline, taco graphics started popping up on clothing and in social media around 2015. That’s the year the taco got an official emoji from the Unicode Consortium.

It’s the same year the Fresno Grizzlies earned national press for their taco promotion night and went all-in on a line of taco-branded merchandise.

The team set a sales record that year.

That was a full four years after the team debuted the Taco Truck Throwdown, with help from marketing manager Sam Hansen. The annual taco celebration had a crowd of 20,000 people this year.

“I knew it would be big because tacos were getting big,” Hansen said in a Fresno Bee profile last year. He wasn’t wrong then, or now, it seems.

It makes sense that Fresno would be hot on this trend. For one, there is no shortage of awesome taco shops in the area. It’s also a place where taco fanatics go on eating tours in stretch limos and put carne asada on pizza.

The Fresno Grizzlies even put the sentiment on a T-shirt (available at the team store): “Pizza: New York, Sushi: Tokyo, Tacos: Fresno.”

Joshua Tehee: 559-441-6479, @joshuatehee

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