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Sep 17, 2013 06:28 PM

La Torta in La Mesa

We had lunch at La Torta today. I have been wanting to eat at this place for eons and we finally made it there. I am just sorry we did not try it sooner.

The room is a medium-sized, casual affair. You place your order at the counter and then they deliver your food to your table.

I had the Chipotle Torta with beef (the beef was marinated in a Chipotle concoction). It was billed as a spicy dish, though I thought it was mild. I suspect they could turn up the heat upon request. The beef was tender as a dove and the rest of the ingredients in this torta (NOT a sandwich), the onions, the avocado, the Chipotle sauce, made for an EXCELLENT meal.

Husband had the Chorizo Torta. To die for, not greasy, rich rich rich, chorizo with onions and avocado. He swooned.

They make their own potatos. To order. They are cut like a potato chip, only slightly thicker. Made fresh. To order. Yes please.

We are going back.

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  1. Did the torta have a schmear of refritos on it?

    1 Reply
    1. re: DiningDiva

      Mmmmm....I don't think so....but I would be willing to go back and try it again.

    2. There was a $20 for $10 groupon out there as well.

      They do a nice job with the milanesa torta too.

      3 Replies
      1. re: JRSD

        Milanesa? Speaking my language now :-)

        1. re: DiningDiva

          I looked at the menu online and it seems to confirm my memory of no beans on most. Also, default is with mayo and mustard which really doesn't go on most of them, IMO.

          Agree w/ DR below that the ahogaba is a good choice.

        2. Very good tortas here. You might like the ahogaba version. Ask them not to slice. Pricey. A fun trolley excursion.

          7 Replies
              1. re: JRSD

                Aha,well, isn't that special...

                1. re: deckape

                  Be even more special if it's a an ahogada torta made with abodaba marinated meat ;-)

                    1. re: DiningDiva

                      Then it would be an abodaba ahogada...

                      Makes my jaw sore just trying to pronounce it.

              2. I went here today and tried the chipotle beef torta. I think the chef that put yours together and the one who did mine might not be the same person, though. The thin-sliced beef was very tender and there was a generous amount of it, but I was anticipating a significantly more prominent chipotle flavor.

                As it was, I found that the torta was crying out for some additional chipotle sauce from the salsa bar, as well as some of the green hot sauce that's brought in a squeeze bottle to the table. The other toppings, onions and avocado, were skimpy, I thought, but again, the salsa bar came to the rescue (at least for onions). And as I'm sure you've noticed, the buns here have the right shape but are made with the wrong kind of bread to be authentic.

                The very tasty potato slices that are served with their tortas seem to be "twice cooked", perhaps pre-baked in a very hot oven to crisp the skins, and then briefly deep fried before serving so that the interiors are warm but not crisp. In this case they actually trumped the torta.

                All in all, I enjoyed this menu selection, even though I thought it was overpriced (like the others here) and even though it needed some intervention on my part to amp up the flavor. I like this place, even though I was just as happy (or maybe happier) when they were around the corner and the prices were much lower.

                By the way, I checked to see if the ahogaba torta was still on the printed menu. It is, and they spell it with a "b". (Not that I know the correct spelling: As you may recall, I'm the one who misspelled patty melt with "d's". Twice.)

                4 Replies
                1. re: DoctorChow

                  Huh. I thought you were referring to the Irish version.

                  1. re: DoctorChow

                    "And as I'm sure you've noticed, the buns here have the right shape but are made with the wrong kind of bread to be authentic."

                    What was wrong with the bread? A proper - I guess you'd call it authentic - torta should be made on a telera roll which is a kissing cousin to the bolillo, both of which are a so distant relative of a french roll.

                    The big problem I've seen with both bolillos and teleras in San Diego is that 1) they're too big, way too big and 2) the crumb on the bread is to soft with not enough chew

                    1. re: DiningDiva

                      The bread's ok. But it's slightly lacking in flavor and the texture is too light for a torta -- more appropriate for a hamburger bun.

                      It's not a big issue. I think the tortas here are pretty good, all in all.