El Charco : Mexico City style cuisine right in the heart of Chula Vista.

A new place in San Diego full of flavor

A street food legacy in Mexico City, are the Tacos al pastor. Dried chile marinated pork is slowly cooked on a vertical rotisserie or spit. The taco is constructed by filling a corn tortilla with the cooked pork, and is then topped with an almost candy-like sweet piece of pineapple. You can customize your taco with the addition of freshly squeezed lime juice, and your favorite salsa. I could have easily eaten the meat all on its own, it was so juicy and full of flavor.

El Charco offers a few different combinations of "Queso Fundido" for all of you cheese lovers out there. I decided on the Queso fundido con rajas ( strips of poblano chiles). Monterrey Jack is melted on the flat top grill, and filled with your addition of choice. The technique of using the flat top, actually cuts a lot of the grease that is sometimes hanging out in the bottom of the bowl underneath all of the cheese. The queso fundido is served with a side of flour tortillas, and just in case you didn't have enough cheesy goodness on one plate, the queso de chicharron comes along for the ride as well. Fill up a flour tortilla with a spoonful of melty, peppery cheese, and have at it.

If you still have room at the end of your taco expedition, the restaurant offers a couple of desserts. Family recipes come into play, with that of which I tried was the Walnut pudding. Creamy pudding with noticeably chopped pieces of Walnuts, created a nice crunch, and a nice subtle sweetness. I was eyeing their Jamaica sorbet as well, which I will have to try on my return visit.

El Charco in Chula Vista brings a taste Mexico City for those who are both familiar or not with the cuisine.

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By Kristin Díaz de Sandi

Kristin and Antonio blog at Life & Food and you can follow them on Twitter at @lifefoodblog and Facebook.



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