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Sep 9, 2008 01:08 PM

Best Torta in DF?

I love Mexico-City style tortas (by the way, the best one I've found at home is at Tortas Los Picudos (2969 24th St., San Francisco). Where can I get the best grilled tortas in DF?

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  1. Tortas El Cuadrilátero
    Luis Moya 73, near Ayuntamiento, Centro

    La Texcocana
    Independencia 8-A, near Balderas and the Museo de Arte Popular, Centro

    Don Polo
    Felix Cuevas 86 (near Av. Coyoacán) Colonia Del Valle

    These are a few that are in my book. Also very good is La Torta Brava, on the south side of 5 de Mayo, near the Zócalo, in business since 1940.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Elchilango

      My fondest torta memory is a place called "El Monje Loco", which we ate at in 1992. We'd come down from several hours of exercise at Ajusco, high above the city. and we were ravenous. I don't know where the place was/is except that it was under a viaduct.
      I was impressed by the girl workers unravelling queso Oaxaca, and tearing out the inner crumb of the bolillos or teleras. The huge mixed tortas were great.

    2. At a minimum, be on the lookout for a milanesa torta. There seems to be a special pride in doing it well in D.F., and there are are numerous interpretations, but the one served up two blocks from my old office in Lomas weighs about a kilo and is muy sabroso.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Veggo

        That & pierna. I guess Cod tortas are also a regional specialty of DF.

      2. La Texcocana
        Los Guajolotes on Insurgentes has a turkey torta with mole that is really something
        La Castellana

        1. La Castellana, El Capricho, Hipocampo, torta al pastor en Don T, de milanesa en los bisquets de álvaro obregón. The best tortas i have tried are not in Mexico City, it´s a place called Tortas Bernal in San Nicolás de los Garza, Nuevo León, mmmm, torta de pierna con chiles serranos y aguacate......i don´t know how they do it, but these are my best tortas ever.

          1. What exactly makes a DF torta? My daughter-in-law is a proud chilanga and stranded in Washington State until December. I'd love to surprise her with a taste of home.

            4 Replies
            1. re: colleend

              Don't Mean To Be Demeaning At All....

              A Torta in Mexico is a type of Sandwich served on one of 4 common types of rolls:

              Bolillo - Similar to French bread but lighter, with a fluffier inside, and slightly sour / yeasty
              Telera - Flat soft, wide roll, slightly yeasty but not crusty at all
              Cemita - Sesame Bun of Middle Eastern (Lebanese, Syrian, Iraqi origins)

              The fillings vary quite a bit throughout Mexico... some are common to many regions of the country, others are unique to certain States, Towns & Cities. The most classic Tortas associated with Mexico City...

              > Milanesa (a schnitzel type steak served on Telera, spread with Beans, Crema, Onions, Avocado, Ancho-Guajillo-Pasilla Salsa)

              > Al Pastor (spit roasted Pork Steaks marinaded in a complex Achiote rub, served with roasted Pineapple & Onion... the bread is Telera spread with Beans, Crema, Onions & Avocado & Tomatillo-Serrano Salsa)

              > Pepito (Charcoal grilled Ribeye, Tomato, Jalapeno, Avocado, Mayo)

              > Bacalao a la Mexicana (Salt Cod cooked in a Tomato-Chipotle-Caper-Olive sauce served on a Bolillo)

              > Chavo del Ocho (Thinly Sliced Pork Ham, Chihuahua Cheese, Tomato, Mayo, Buffalo brand Hot Sauce on a Bolillo)

              > Pierna (Roasted Pork Leg, Mayo & Pasilla-Clove-Cinammon Salsa)

              1. re: Eat_Nopal

                Demeaning? Why would you say that? On the contrary, I very much appreciate you taking the time to outline Mexico City tortas, very informative and very helpful.

                Based on your description, her favorite must be the Pepito, for Melina it just wouldn't be an authentic DF torta without the avocado, tomato, and mayo. One more question--Is the crust side of the roll buttered before grilling?

                Again, thank you EN, your post makes me want to visit Mexico City again, if for no other reason than to try 'em all!

                1. re: colleend

                  "One more question--Is the crust side of the roll buttered before grilling?"

                  It depends on the vendor. The purist approach would say no... the best tortas are made from the freshest bread & you don't griddle that. However, some vendors don't always use fresh baked bread so the way around it is to griddle it with some fat... the result of course is delicious but different and not in the spirit of Antano (yester year).

                  Then of course you have the Tortas al Vapor places (which is another regional style of Torta in DF but not very ubiquitous).... this is where fatty meats (like Cabeza, Suadero, Pierna) are kept warm & moist with steam (in some respects Mexico's version of a Hot Pastrami)... in this case the bread (almost exclusive Bolillo) is placed in with the meat where it warms up & picks up some of the juices.

                  1. re: Eat_Nopal

                    Just a quick note and thank you for the torta information. We visited the local Mexican market and found everything we needed--and, the tortas were excellent! We also found the season's first pan de muerto. After just one tiny bite our dear chilanga proclaimed it disgusting. Beautiful, but disgusting. Oh well. It's sometimes hazardous trying to duplicate the tastes of home.