Columbian in SD County
They have some Colombian specialties at Tropical Star on Balboa. It's been a long time since I've eaten here, so I'd love a report back! At the least, it's also a grocery, so you can get the ingredients and make the food yourself.
Colombian food is a lot of meat and potatoes, plaintains and rice. Different regions in Colombia have different special soups, but Colombia is most famous for the arepas, cornmeal cakes. They are different in different regions, but I think the best is the cheese-stuffed arepas cooked on a grill until just crispy on the outside and melty on the inside. In fact, Chowhound championed the arepa lady of Jackson Heights, Queens.
Here is one of the menu descriptions:
Colombian country plate.
A combination plate of colombian chorizo, morcilla (black sausage), chicharron (pork rinds), patacones (fried green plantains), papas criollas (yellow potatoes), yuca frita (fried yucca) and arepa (cornmeal griddle cake).
6163 Balboa Ave, San Diego, CA 92111
Oh, I love Tropical Star! It's been almost a year since we went there last, but I'm always thinking about it. We're just hardly ever at that end of Balboa. It's a small place, but the owners are really friendly. I had the country plate last time and enjoyed everything on the plate. The house made chimichurri sauce is so good, too! They don't sell it (just bottled sauces) but the owner gave me a small container to take home and I ate it with everything.
I've never heard of it, but I didn't even know there was a unique Colombian cuisine. Could you give us a quick lesson? I'd really be interested.
As to your immediate question, my best advice would be to try Berta's in Old Town (assuming they're still there). They used to feature a variety of dishes from Central and South America. Good luck.
. . . jim strain