Las Tortas

Restaurant: Las Tortas
Cuisine: Mexican/Sandwiches
Last visited: November 27, 2009
Location: Vancouver, BC (South Cambie)
Address: 3353 Cambie Street
Price Range: $10 or less, $10-20

1Poor 2OK 3Good 4Very good 5Excellent 6FMF Must Try!

Food: 5 (based on what I tried)
Service: 2.5
Ambiance: 2
Overall: 5
Additional comments:

  • Authentic gourmet Mexican sandwiches
  • Hole in the wall
  • Mexican owned/operated
  • Local suppliers/producers
  • Homemade guacamole, dips, beans, potato chips
  • Made upon order
  • Busy during peak hours
  • Seats 15-20
  • Self-service/pay at cashier
  • Accepts Visa
  • Eat in/Take-out
  • Free delivery w/min. $15
  • Open everyday 5-9pm

**Recommendation: Cubana

Cubana 2For some reason it’s easy to miss even though the sign is huge! It looks like a hole in the wall, but it’s not really. The inside looks quite new and it’s brightly lit and clean, but it’s not a place where you stay to socialize. It’s a quick, casual and delicious meal.

Cubana 3To order: take a brown paper bag (also their menu), select your item and give it to the cashier. The torta is also served in the same paper bag.

Las Tortas was almost like the Quizno’s of Mexican sandwiches… but better. A torta is a Mexican sandwich or ‘hamburger’. It’s served in a white sandwich roll called ‘teleera’ which they don’t make in house but it is supplied by a local producer. It was quite pricey ($9.95 for the most popular sandwich), but it was huge and worth it. It was home made upon order with local ingredients and lots of it!

Note: It is sister restaurant to Soupspoons – a local chain that serves gourmet homemade soups.

On the table:

Cubana 1**Cubana – 6/6 (FMF Must Try)

  • Pierna, turkey, milanesa & panela cheese. Served hot with tomato, cabbage, pickled onions & jalapenos, guacamole, refried beans, butter and mayo $9.95
  • You can customize your order and take out some of the sauces, but I wouldn’t. Just go for it all – that’s how it’s meant to be eaten so I wouldn’t mess around with the recipe – unless of course you have allergies.
  • The Cubana is their most popular sandwich.

Cubana 5

  • It’s almost a meat sandwich with 3 different kinds of meat:
    • 1) Pierna: slow roasted pork thigh marinated in Mexican spices.
      • This was super tender juicy roasted lean pork and it almost tasted like meatloaf.
      • It was nice and salty and tasted like pulled pork but even juicier. It was actually almost creamy it was so soft and tender.
    • 2) Turkey: this was almost like turkey ‘ham’, so not the thin slices of turkey deli meat and not actual turkey pieces either.
      • It wasn’t as distinct as the other meats used, but it added anther layer of texture and flavour that was different than the other two meats.
    • 3) Milanesa: breaded chicken breast also known as a chicken schnitzel. This was delicious.
      • For schnitzel it could have been pounded thinner, but for this sandwich the thickness was perfect. It just made it a bit meatier.
      • It was really crispy and not greasy and the chicken was really tender and juicy especially for being white meat.
  • The meats are all delicious and go together so well!
  • I’m surprised it had so much flavour without any beef too.
  • Besides the meats, one of the best parts was the Panela cheese, which is a fresh Mexican cheese that tastes like fresh Buffalo mozzarella.
  • It was creamy, mild, and almost sponge-like. It didn’t melt into the sandwich either and I’m not sure if it would have tasted better if it did.
  • The sauces and dips in it were also good quality and all house made.
  • The layer of homemade refried black beans on the bottom was really flavourful and it blended into the cheese.
  • The homemade guacamole and homemade garlic aioli were also fresh, but there was only a thin layer of each.
  • Slices of avocado would have been amazing!
  • Besides all these layers of salty flavours it was also spicy from the jalapeños and tangy from the pickled red onions.
  • The cabbage and tomatoes were really fresh too and gave it a nice crunch.
  • It was a great ratio of ingredients and it hits all your taste buds in all the right ways.
  • The bread was amazing and from local suppliers. It was hot with a crispy exterior and super soft inside.
  • It was a perfectly grilled sandwich roll. The bread was nice and thin yet sturdy enough to hold all the ingredients without everything falling apart.
  • To be honest, I was expecting a super greasy sandwich that would be really saucy and drippy. However it was none of the above.
  • It was not even that messy to eat and they give you a moist toilette.
  • I mean it is big and tall, but the ingredients were really fresh and it didn’t feel like fast food even though it kind of was. I would definitely go again.

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