The Best ‘South of the Border’ Eats

Food, Things to Do — By meaghanclark on March 29, 2010 at 9:51 pm

San Diego is respected as one of the few southern California cities that knows how to correctly mesh all kinds of cuisines. Yet one of the most popular and well known dishes in the city of sun consists of some seriously basic ingredients – beans, rice and spices. Bordering Mexico, San Diego’s most infamous flavors come from one of North America’s most deprived countries -though what it lacks in pesos it makes up for in flavor. Some of the best are on our side of the border, where passports aren’t necessary but an affection for hot spices are.

East Village’s Pokez offers up Mexican cuisine with a twist – with an extensive menu serving up tofu burritos and potato tacos – with the typical carnivore fare as well – it’s a past time the local ghetto isn’t likely to forget anytime soon.

Roberto’s is a great late-night taco shop, open 24 hours where the carne asada fries are piled high with guacamole, cheese, sour cream, salsa fresca and true Mexican-style carne. Though this San Diego chain might not seem as appealing during the bright daylight hours, it’s a haven for night owls.

Taco Surf doubles as a surfboard museum and dive eatery in Pacific Beach that offers locals the best and most attempted dish in San Diego – the California Burrito. Offering up your choice of four ingredients to top off the meat (necessities for a California include potatoes, cheese, beans and guacamole) it’s perfect after a day at the beach.

Eating Mexican couldn’t be done right without visiting Old Town, a historic center to San Diego’s rich Hispanic history; besides the margaritas, Casa Guadalajara offers the freshest fajitas in town – served steaming on a heaping hot plate with a pile of side treats like fresh guacamole, beans, rice and vegetables.

Without even trying their food, you’re going to love El Camino Super Cocina Mexicana with it’s eccentric aesthetic – South Park’s local favorite, El Camino fills its walls with fluorescent lighting, bright colors, portraits and more to please the eye, while the complimentary salsas and spiced veggies make for a great start to every meal.

Las Olas is for those who want a great Mexican dish but don’t want to go the distance finding it – an ocean view in Cardiff is pretty far from the true south of the border, but your taste buds won’t know the difference with burritos weighing in at over a pound.

[photos courtesy of Creative Commons]

Tags: Mexican, restaurants, San Diego