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Very Important Taco: Fried Chicken Taco at Nine-Ten La Jolla

The sophisticated restaurant flipped a favorite sandwich into a beloved taco


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Photo by Sam Wells

Purists beware: The nontraditional taco is here to stay. Just look to the expansion of City Tacos into La Mesa and Sam the Cooking Guy’s Not Not Tacos, which recently opened in Little Italy Food Hall. Nine-Ten Restaurant and Bar has joined the ranks now, too.

Earlier this year, the sophisticated restaurant perched above La Jolla Cove debuted its fried chicken taco. “We had a fried chicken sandwich on the menu,” says Executive Chef Jason Knibb. “It was very popular, but it was also time for a change. So rather than take it off entirely, I opted to flip it into a taco.”

The dish includes a buttermilk-battered fried chicken breast, avocado puree, cabbage and carrot slaw, and salsa made with char-grilled tomatillos blended with lime juice, jalapeños, and onions. Knibb’s unique take is the jerk-brined chicken, a nod to his Jamaican roots. “That’s really what my style is all about—doing something new, but something still familiar. A taco is very familiar. My spin was a big piece of good old-fashioned fried chicken.”

910 Prospect Street, La Jolla ninetenlajolla

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