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Authentic Mexican Tortillas at Pusateri's!

Cat123 Jun 22, 2008 11:08 AM

Stopped by there today for a few specialty items and they had an in-store special of a new boutique line of tortillas (corn and flour) being launched under the name of Alba Lisa Gourmet Food by Alba Quinn. Samples of each were available and they were fantastic - small and flavourful. They are pricey but made locally and really worth every cent IMO. Not sure how long they will be there but if you are in the area definitely give them a try.

  1. c
    chunkeymonkey Jun 22, 2008 12:26 PM

    I make my own tortilla chips fresh,I just buy a package of round soft tortilla shell for mexican tacos cut them up into triangles and deep fry them,make some fresh salsa and guacamole,tequila shots and you set!

    I find Pusateris's overpriced in all of their items,but if you can afford them who am I to judge. go nuts.

    2 Replies
    1. re: chunkeymonkey
      Cat123 Jun 22, 2008 12:33 PM

      Hi - I know what you mean re: the tortilla chips - often much better if you make your own. Although the Que Pasa brand from BC is actually really good.

      What I was referring to above are actual soft tortillas, which are very hard to find in midtown (other than the Dempsters brand at Dominion - yuk). Although sometimes there are good ones in Kensington, the ones I mentioned above are the best I've had in Toronto.

      1. re: Cat123
        TorontoJo Jun 22, 2008 12:40 PM

        If you are near any of the Mexican or Latin American restaurants in town, many of them are willing to sell you fresh corn tortillas if you just call them in advance.

    2. Kagemusha Jun 22, 2008 12:31 PM

      The irony here is too delicious. Nothing could be more pedestrian than a tortilla, so a "designer" tortilla line flogged by Toronto's foodie extortionistas is, well...absurd.

      13 Replies
      1. re: Kagemusha
        jayt90 Jun 22, 2008 12:57 PM

        That was my thought too. Flour and water, in a press, how much can that go for?

        1. re: jayt90
          Cat123 Jun 22, 2008 01:14 PM

          Um, well they are about $4.99 a pack - not crazy - and definitely not ironic. And yes, although nothing could be more pedestrian than a tortilla to a mexican, they are darned difficult to find in Toronto, especially the corn ones in proper size for making real street style enchiladas. The woman who runs the business and had the stall at Pusateri's is very charming and I was just trying to get the word out - it is not "designer" by any means - just good.

          1. re: Cat123
            Kagemusha Jun 22, 2008 02:57 PM

            But would she merit a mention if her demo was at Loblaws? Doubtful. $5 a pack is ridiculous, her "charm" notwithstanding. Corn tortillas aren't exactly difficult to make.

            1. re: Kagemusha
              Blueicus Jun 22, 2008 04:06 PM

              $5 will get you nearly a couple kilos of excellent tortillas at la tortilleria, freshly made that day and enough to feed a huge party. Of course, if you live beside Pusateri's then that's a different matter... but if you're downtown you might as well go get some in Kensington market.

              1. re: Blueicus
                wontonfm Jun 22, 2008 05:20 PM

                agreed. i laughed out loud at the idea of $4.99 for a pack of tortillas. but i'm sure there's a market for them amongst the Pusateri's crowd so I don't blame this charming woman for claiming a piece of the pie.


                1. re: wontonfm
                  Cat123 Jun 22, 2008 07:04 PM

                  Thanks for jumping all over me and laughing out loud at me everyone - so very Chowhound of you!

                  I live like 2 minutes from Pusateri's and this was the first chow worthy thing i've ever found there and thought I would mention it but I guess you showed me. I'm not a fan of the ones in Kensington and to be honest an extra buck or two is really nothing to me if they are authentic. Contrary to what anyone says, corn tortillas are NOT easy to make as it's hard to get the right ratio of masa, lime, etc. and then the press is a pain as well if you are not born into it. Yes I think she would merit attention at Loblaws or whatever as they are really good.

                  And you think that Pusatieri's is pretentious...

                  1. re: Cat123
                    bluedog Jun 22, 2008 07:36 PM

                    Well, I'd be willing to try them, but I'm really very inherently cheap ;). For my part, thanks for bringing them up. In any event, it happens, and I've had to defend posts as well. Stand tall Cat123!

                    1. re: bluedog
                      wontonfm Jun 22, 2008 08:23 PM

                      I second being inherently cheap :) Believe me, the Pusateri's tortilla is a total chowfind because lets face it, many people who shop at say Pusateri's uptown are not trudging down to Kensington to save 2 or 3 bucks on tortillas.

                      Do you know if this woman sells her tortillas at other places too?

                    2. re: Cat123
                      peppermint pate Jun 23, 2008 06:52 AM

                      I hear you cat123. There are few things I enjoy more than shopping in Kensington or SLM but with 2 little babes, a part-time job and the rest of life's insanities, those trips end up being more fun-filled outings than my go-to places for weekly groceries. Pusateri's and the five thieves and other places like that serve a purpose - most of what they sell is top-line quality, unquestionably with a price to match, but if you can afford the difference (factoring in time as money) - whether from time to time or all the time - then so be it. Hey, if I had more time, I would love to do all my shopping at the local farmer's markets and Costco's or whatever but that's just not where I'm at right now. I agree that some of the stuff is more ludicrously priced than others but for a few bucks difference here and there, I can save myself the same amount in downtown parking costs - not to mention the ever-elusive time - and pick up a great product at one of these other spots. A chowfind is a chowfind - cheap or spendy - thanks for posting.

                  2. re: Blueicus
                    MindGrinder Jun 22, 2008 05:25 PM

                    Just went there for take out (the place is addictive). The fellow behind the counter even gave us a few free torilla shells (we had to make a torilla for our doggy).
                    La Tortilleria is amazing!!!!

                    1. re: Blueicus
                      bluedog Jun 22, 2008 05:46 PM

                      Same thing occured to me as I finally dragged my kids down to la tortillaria last Sunday (for fathers day). We liked the tacos, but $1.75 fo a 1l2 kilo of tortillas kept us going all week. They love them!

                      But I'm also guessing anyone who shops at Pusateri's won't care if their paying 4.99 for a package of tortillas.

                      1. re: bluedog
                        chunkeymonkey Jun 22, 2008 06:21 PM

                        Where is this tortillaria you are talking about,and are they freshly made daily?


                        1. re: chunkeymonkey
                          bluedog Jun 22, 2008 06:31 PM

                          Been discussed at length here: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/508128

                          The tortillas are indeed made fresh daily and its located at 68 Wales, outside the market proper,but only a 5 minute walk away. I liked the tacos, but was disappointed there were no charcoal grilled beef (Carne Asada?). Overall I preferred the tacos at Perola's but my kids preferred La Tortillaria. We all agreed that the tortillas were great, however! By the way, they also make their own chips from the tortillas, a handfull inlcuded with every taco order.

            2. d
              Dean Tudor Jun 22, 2008 06:40 PM

              Most Latin American stores will sell you a refrigerated package of 36 average sized corn torillas for $1.60, which will make 6 X 36 chips. I bake mine, and thus do not add any more calories. I don't even salt them. Home made guac or red/green salsa -- and you are away without any of the calories..

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