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Tijuana Street Food Boom

Tijuana's culinary scene takes it outside


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Photo by Luis Garcia

It’s a smorgasbord! Tijuana’s Food Garden offers chilaquiles next to crêpes next to Baja-Asian fusion.

Here’s the skinny on the open-air food parks popping up in vacant lots all over town.

The first of the flock to open in early 2013, Food Garden’s mantra says it all: “Keep Tijuana tasty.” With six stalls, options include chilaquiles, tacos, vegan comfort food, crêpes, Baja-Asian fusion (Bajasian?), and picuditas—vertical sandwiches served in tin cups. Add to that arts and craft fairs and DJs on the weekends, two-for-one Tecates on Saturday evenings, and a flood of local craft brews amid a backdrop of Mexican domestic décor done oh-so right.

Named as a nod to Route 66, the food truck court Estación 55—Station 55—is impossible to miss, thanks to the burger joint rigged in an old metro bus edged with color-morphing LEDs. Plow through the 200-peso two-pounder in less than 30 minutes and it’s free. Also on the menu are empanadas, woodfired pizzas, “Mexiterranean” pastas, and 10-ounce ribeyes.

Behind the HQ of telecommunications giant Telnor is Telefonica Gastro Park. Everything but the beer hut is on wheels: Greek food, ramen, seared tuna sandwiches, yellowfin carpaccio, and bacon sausages that’ve been soaked in olive oil for four hours, served with a side of corn on the cob. Wash it all down with local brew by Insurgente and Ramuri on tap in the back garden.

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