Everyday Eats: Tortas at El Paisa

Skip the tacos and try the torta at this Sherman Heights Mexican restaurant.



The tacos and burritos at Tacos El Paisa are great, about that you'll get no argument. But, if the meat is the main attraction, the torta can just as easily be the way to go. Here's why: for $5.99, you get a heaping pile of protein topped with avocado, cheese, and tomato on a soft, toasted bun, plus a side of fries.

Tortas come with every meat imaginable, ranging from carne asada and pollo asado, to carnitas, but for me, it's all about the al pastor-- little bits of crisp, yet juicy marinated pork sliced off the perpetually spinning vertical rotisserie. The marinade, made with pineapple, chilies, and a splash of vinegar, permeates the pork, giving it a sweet and spicy flavor with a hint of bitterness. Did I mention you get a lot of it? It's true; the meat is so generously portioned that bun can hardly hold it all. Pork falls out the front of the sandwich, spilling on to the fries... which is exactly how I discovered the best possible way to eat it.

First, load up the pork with salsa, some of the jalapeno peppers, and a good squeeze of lime. Then, get eating, and don't worry about the bits of meat that are bound to topple out, or if the bread breaks apart a little. Half way through, you can ditch the bread and empty all of that pork, avocado, tomato, and cheese directly on to the crispy spuds for the second course: al pastor fries

If you can manage dessert, the tortilleria next door has an awesome selection of paletas for a buck a piece. It's the same brand you'll find at Albertson's, but the flavors are the more interesting, including traditional options like horchata, jamaica, and rum raisin -- though I have to say, I'm partial to the cookies and cream.

Tacos El Paisa is located at Imperial and 25th, in Sherman Heights (map)

Related:
Everyday Eats: Falafel Shawarma from The Kebab Shop
Everyday Eats: Panang Curry from Sab-E-Lee

About the author: Erin Jackson is obsessed with finding the best cheap and tasty eats in San Diego. Keep up with her other food finds on EJeats.com

Add your comment:
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Sponsored

Enter a Drawing You Could Actually Win

There are more than 1,700 prizes in the Dream House Raffle

Buy a Raffle Ticket, Win This Rare Sports Car

Donate to a good cause to seriously upgrade your ride
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. 103 Dishes to Eat in San Diego before You Die
    Here's Made, our little black book of San Diego's best food
  2. San Diego Magazine's Travel Awards
    Cast your vote now for your favorite hotels, travel companies and attractions
  3. Why Restaurants Are Adding a Surcharge, and Why Diners Should Gladly Pay It
    Restaurateurs are finding ways to deal with the challenges of the minimum wage hike
  4. The Dog Lover's Guide to San Diego
    Here are 52 ways to experience San Diego with your four-legged friend
  5. 67 San Diego Holiday Traditions You Don't Want to Miss
    'Tis the season for fa-la-la fun in San Diego
  6. Meet the Founders of the New Officine Buona Forchetta
    Native Italians Matteo Cattaneo and Mario Cassineri talk recipes, family-friendly dining, and the virtues of good bread
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module