A family-owned business since 1954, Jimboy’s Tacos debuted in a small trailer on Kings Beach in Lake Tahoe, California. Founded by Jim “Jimboy” Knudson, it started with Jim’s recipe for his signature fragrantly spiced ground beef taco, encased inside a grilled stone-ground corn tortilla with some crisp lettuce and freshly shredded cheese, and dusted with a liberal coating of grated parmesan cheese.
Knudson was a pioneer in many respects – it’s hard to believe now, but when Jim first began selling his tacos from a trailer in the mid-50’s, not many had ever heard of the “taco.” In fact, Jim had to spell it out phonetically on the trailer so people could pronounce it. In addition, there weren’t many people using food trucks at that time to sell food, and that proved to be a novelty for customers as well.
After a few years, traffic began to pick up, fueled in large part by positive word of mouth from locals in the area. In the spring of 1958, Joe King, owner of King’s Beach and a huge fan of Jimboy’s Tacos, built a small building on North Tahoe Boulevard for the sole purpose of giving Jimboy’s a more permanent home.
Celebrities performing in the famous Cal Neva Lodge in Tahoe, including members of the famous “Rat Pack,” Dean Martin, Joey Bishop and Peter Lawford, began hearing about Jimboy’s Tacos and making trips to the storefront. All three stars from “Bonanza” – Lorne Greene, Dan Blocker and Michael Landon, were also fans of Jimboy’s Tacos. In fact, they would often send someone to order tacos for the cast and crew when they were filming in the area. Countless other stars of the 60’s and 70’s began discovering Jimboy’s Tacos at the same time.