Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > United States
Reload this Page >

San Diego: Carnitas (gourmet) Snack Shop/2621 University

San Diego: Carnitas (gourmet) Snack Shop/2621 University

Old Jan 14th, 2014, 02:13 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 11,375
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
San Diego: Carnitas (gourmet) Snack Shop/2621 University

Holy Urban Legend come true. After helping plant 70 plus roses this morning at our Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden in San Diego's Balboa Park (getting it spiffed up for the 2014 National Rose Show that will be here in May) - said what the hey and drove about 10 blocks to the Carnitas Snack Shop at 2621 University - just north up Park Ave a few blocks from the Park/Zoo - and about the same distance to the right/east on University. http://carnitassnackshack.com/

This has been the most ballyhooed/highly rated new taco shop in San Diego that I can ever remember hearing/reading about (and we have had plenty - such as El Zarape - http://elzarape.menutoeat.com/ etc) - and I had even tried to find it once before and drove by it's relatively innocuous appearance - but this time - I did spot the short line forming in front.

Since it was a Tuesday - and their newbie webpage says they are closed on Tuesdays - it wasn't very crowded - according to the four nicely dressed grey haired ladies in front of me. They were very friendly - and were bringing their out of town friend - she being a former SD resident now living in Annapolis.

Anyhow - I brought home an order of two Carnitas Tacos - ($7.50 but packed enough with crunchy Carnitas to satisfy two) - and my wife agreed they were just marvelous.

As tasty a Carnitas Taco as I/we have ever had - and while I was waiting for my order - in the cute little outdoor sitting area along the side/rear of the building - which also has a couple of herb gardens and a small satellite bar in the back - I noticed the other orders and people were very merrily tucking into - including good looking burgers (rated in the top 10 in SD for burgers alone), Ribeye sandwiches, shark taco, BLT, Beet Terrine, a Panzanella salad and the like.

Hey - they even gained recognition on the Iconic List of SD Sandwiches for their "Triple Threat" (see below) and highly recommend you stop by "the Shack" - if you are ever in/around central San Diego.

"The sandwich: "The Triple Threat". A trifecta of pork stacked on a Kaiser roll from Sadie Rose Bakery: a chicken-fried pork cutlet, slow roasted pulled pork and slices of applewood-smoked bacon, topped with home made pepperoncini and pickle relish. It could be overkill; it's not."
Tomsd is offline  
Old Jan 14th, 2014, 03:40 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 49,521
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks tom hope to check it out soon!
Here is another fantastic Mexican restaurant: El Sol at 2037 University Ave. It is literaly a tiny hole in the wall. But very clean and cheerful place to be. Very authentic.

http://elsolmexicanrestaurantsd.com/contact-us.html
nanabee is offline  
Old Jan 14th, 2014, 05:28 PM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 11,375
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Nana - LOL. Have heard of that one and drove by it today looking for the Carnitas Snack Shack.

It looked intresting. We are so fortunate to have so many good Mexican restaurants here in San Diego - and also Asian, plus the usual foo-foo.
Tomsd is offline  
Old Jan 15th, 2014, 07:29 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 9,171
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
<local and family farmers, ranchers, bakers, vineyards and breweries. We source our ingredients as locally as possible to provide with you the tastiest farm-fresh food.>

Sounds good. We are due a SD trip. I saw a show on the travel channel the other night about carne asada burritos and they were putting french fries on top of them. When did that start? I love them cooked in lime and cilantro with the fresh salsa bar. I would not want a pile of fries on top.
flpab is offline  
Old Jan 15th, 2014, 07:59 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,379
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
The original burrito-- meat, salsa, onion and chiles (and that's it!)-- has its roots in Chihuahua, Mexico, then Tucson took up the charge in the early 20th century (or so the legend goes).

The tarted-up burritos of today probably started getting their accessories in the 1950s here in southern CA, and the famous Mission burrito that you find up in San Francisco apparently dates from the 1960s.

San Diego can take credit for the California burrito, in which a fairly plain burrito gets loaded up with fries. Think of it as Mexican-American disco fries in a flour tortilla. You very rarely find California burritos outside of San Diego County (a place near my house makes both carne asada fries AND California burritos), but hey-- if Pittsburgh's Primanti Brothers can pile fries on deli sandwiches and make some money, why can't San Diego taquerías make California burritos?

Back to the main thread: I LOVE San Diego for Mexican food. Nice to know there are some notable joints on University, not too far from Balboa Park. We'll have to try them next time we're in town!
rjw_lgb_ca is offline  
Old Jan 15th, 2014, 08:00 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 7,667
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Okay, first you brag about the weather, and now the carnitas??? Mean, tom, just mean..........
tenthumbs is offline  
Old Jan 15th, 2014, 02:06 PM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 11,375
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
My favortie Burrito is Carne Asada - and no - I would not pile anything on top of a good one. Maybe a little guaco sauce - and some chipolte or your favorite hot sauce - some cilantro and chopped onions - and your are good to go.

I/we also love Carnitas - and the Old Town Mexican Cafe http://www.oldtownmexcafe.com/ - probably makes as good as we have had - in a dish - but the cruncy Carnitas in the Carnits Snack Shack were unsurpassed.

We also really liked Tony Jackals in Del Mar (went more when my in laws - may they RIP - lived in the Ranch) - and they had wonderful Chile Verde. Think the old Crooner - Bing Crosby - and the other Del Mar Race Track founders used to hang there. http://www.tonysjacal.com/
Tomsd is offline  
Old Jan 15th, 2014, 02:11 PM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 11,375
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Actually - maybe Tony's Jackal (correct spelling) called it Enchilada Verde - and I ordered it each time we went there.

They also had great Margaritas as does Old Town Mexican Cafe, plus at Old Town Mexican Cafe - you can watch through the front window - while the ladies in traditional costume make/toss the tortillas

Oh Tenthumbs; Sorry - not trying to rub it in but get tired of some people saying San Diego is cold. Far from it.

And as for the Mexican food - well - guilty as charged.
Tomsd is offline  
Old Jan 15th, 2014, 02:13 PM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 11,375
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
And my bad: Carnitas Snack Shack is actually at 2632 University - on the North side of the street.
Tomsd is offline  
Old Jan 17th, 2014, 04:23 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 285
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have really wanted to go to Carnitas Snack Shack but haven't made it. Can't wait.

I will say that some of the worst carnitas I've had has been from Old Town Mexican Cafe. Flavorless.
elizzie4000 is offline  
Old Jan 17th, 2014, 04:29 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 9,171
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have eaten at Old Town Mexican Cafe, had one huge margarita there. I also think they do a great fish taco in SD.
flpab is offline  
Old Jan 17th, 2014, 07:20 PM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 11,375
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Well - some nights it all depends on the cook, whatever - at virtually any restaurant - except the very best/top rated.

Carnitas Snack Shack is very hot/primo right now - that's all I can report.
Tomsd is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
Traveler_2012
United States
22
Nov 22nd, 2017 09:39 AM
Tomsd
United States
7
Oct 4th, 2012 04:29 PM
patsye
United States
14
Oct 27th, 2004 01:44 PM
nicenancy
United States
2
Dec 4th, 2003 02:11 PM
lanann
United States
8
Mar 28th, 2003 07:55 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information