Tortas in a three-way: squash blossom, Mexican corn truffle, and mushroom.
Lara Hata
Tortas in a three-way: squash blossom, Mexican corn truffle, and mushroom.

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La Torta Gorda

2833 24th St.
San Francisco, CA 94110

Category: Restaurant > Mexican

Region: Mission/ Bernal Heights

Details

2833 24th St. (at Bryant), 642-9600, www.latortagorda.com. 5:30 a.m.-8 p.m. Mon.-Fri.; 7 a.m.-4 p.m. Sat.; 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Sun. Muni: 27, 48. Delivery available. Noise level: low.

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And then there's La Torta Gorda's mole poblano ($12.95), an iconic regional dish now served in every corner of Mexico and many sit-down restaurants in San Francisco. Mole poblano is a dish so famous it has earned itself a creation myth — supposedly concocted by the nuns of the Convent of Santa Rosa in the city of Puebla — and many have seen its blend of toasted chiles, seeds, spices, herbs, and dried fruits as a metaphor for Mexican cuisine in its entirety, the fusion of the European and the indigenous. Mole poblano, too often, is the Muzak version of itself, too sweet, too soft, too chocolaty. In La Torta Gorda's mole, the potency is restored: the toasted chiles reign over the fruit and ground nuts in the sauce, and their faint, charry bitterness melds to the late-hitting note of dark chocolate. Cinnamon floats up, brushes the nose, and flees, then returns. It's a good mole, one that keeps you scooping up bits of sauce, barely paying attention to the braised chicken coating it. Sandwiches may be the lifeblood of La Torta Gorda, but the mole poblano is its heart.

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