One known as "America's Finest City," Old Town San Diego is now a tourist hot spot and major culinary destination. Open air tortillerias and handmade tortillas prepared on site - a rarity in the U.S. - are unique to Old Town, where a walk down any one of its charming streets will delight your olfactory sense and have your tastebuds mewing for a chance to experience its flavors.
Click through to find the last and best handmade tortilla titans in Old Town San Diego. It's a short wolk between each place and definitely worth the journey.
A popular venue that promotes fresh ingredients and fresh tortillas, Coyote Cafe and Cantina is both a tasty tortilleria and an ideal spot for people watching. Enjoy the game in Coyote's cantina, check out the colorful foot traffic from the dining room, or plan your day's shopping in the courtyard. Tortillas are available in traditional preparations as well as chocolate and strawberry flavors. And if you don't have time to stop in, you can purchase your tortillas curbside.
This San Diego classic has been serving loyal guests for 30-plus years. The banner outside says it all - home of the original handmade tortilla in Old Town. Though you'll likely have to wait for a table - tortillas are done right here and patrons, who come from far and near, know it - you'll be entertained by the bar's delicious cocktails and a view to watching tortillas, which are served with generous pats of butter, fly off the griddle. A colorful Mexican fiesta-style atmosphere and Mariachi music make it a fun place to be.
Another favorite is Miguel’s, whose 30 years in business, multiple locations, and traditional Mexican flavors make it a San Diego institution. Outside is a chilled out patio with a fire pit; inside is a lounge with a bird's eye view to Miguel's non-stop tortilla flipping. Warning: the white jalapeño queso sauce can be addictive. (Its recipe is a long held secret so don’t even ask.)
Fred’s edge is that, unlike most of its competitors, it's incorporated California cooking styles to offer lighter, healthier fare. Fresh ingredients and sauces and salsas made daily on location are Fred's best selling points. Pair with freshly made tortillas and a cold Mexican beer and you've got yourself a perfect Sunday Fun Day.
Think of a favorite relative that has a quaint little back yard. That’s this little place gem of a spot tucked away in a tiny Old Town alcove. El Patio's signature is down home food prepared in a welcoming environment. Get some tortillas while you relax in its garden.
As you walk toward the north end of Old Town it becomes a state historic park. Arrive here and you've hit the mother-load. Casa de Reyes is an airy, open space surrounded by lush gardens, gift shops, and - wait for it - a stage. If your timing is right you'll catch a free performance while dining on traditional Mexican comfort food and, of course, fresh tortillas.
Lauded by local critics as one of the city's best Mexican eateries, Casa Guadalajara serves up traditional favorites amidst fountains, Mexican folk art, and a Mariachi band. Even the cantina napkins are beautiful. Get some freshly made tortillas inside.