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La Carnita

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A group of workmates and I decided we should get some food after a meeting, and someone suggested La Carnita. I haven’t had much mexican before, so why not?


The Atmosphere

The vibe at this place is a little eclectic, but it works. There’s only a printed sugar skull on the outside as a sign, so that’s the indication that you’re at the right place. The music is loud, there’s people packed in, so you know this place has to be good.


The Food

La Carnita - Tortilla Chips
Tortilla Chips with Guacamole, Corn Salsa, and Serrano & Cashew Bean Dip – $13

We ordered the tortilla chips to start. There’s an option to have one side and that would make it $6.50, but we wanted all three sides. My favourite was the guacamole. It was creamy, had had some chilli powder on it for a little kick. I think the white bits on top were cheese but I’m not too sure. Second favourite was the serrano & cashew bean dip. This was the most mild side of the three, but still really tasty. I couldn’t taste cashew too well, but I think it’s because all of the other flavours are stronger than the nut. The third favourite was corn salsa. This one had the strongest kick of all, and it threw me into a coughing fit. I love corn, and this salsa is awesome with the tortilla chips, but the heat factor was too strong for me. The tortilla chips are dusted with ancho chili powder and taste great by itself. But in the true form of tortilla chips, you just have to dip it in something, you know?


La Carnita - Tostada de Ceviche
Tostada de Ceviche – $6.25

My first taco was tostada de ceviche. It is made of albacore tuna, guacamole, coconut, habanero, tomato and cucumber. The first thing I thought of when I took a bite was how much guacamole was on this. Yes, I love guacamole, but I felt it was almost too much on here. I couldn’t really taste the tuna unless I thought really hard about it. There’s some sprouts on top which gave it a satisfying crunch. I didn’t get too much heat from the habanero although I’m not sure if there was a lot to begin with. The neat thing about this is the shell it’s on. The shell is hard! I was expecting a soft shell to fold and wrap up but nope, the shell is hard and crispy. I had to pick it up like a slice of pizza to eat. Would I eat this again? Oh definitely. But hopefully with more tuna and less guac.


La Carnita - Carnita
Carnita taco – $4.75

Next up was carnita. Made with confit pork, jalapeño sauce, mango salsa, queso añejo (a type of Mexican cheese; I had to look that up), and cilantro, this one packed a whopping heat punch for me. The meat was tender and juicy, and the mix of flavours was really good. More mango salsa please!


La Carnita - Crispy Cotija
Crispy Cotija taco – $4.75

A big platter came next with a bunch of tacos. Where to start? I settled with crispy cotija. This is deep fried cotija cheese, sitting on a bed of cauliflower and pinto bean mash, topped with pickled carrots, chipotle sauce, green onions, and cilantro. This was good, but didn’t have a wow factor to it. I’d never really had fried cheese before, let alone in a taco, but with the chipotle sauce, it was really tasty.


La Carnita - In Cod We Trust
In Cod We Trust – $4.75

Easily my favourite of the night, In Cod We Trust features a spectacularly deep fried strip of fresh cod, voltron sauce (a sweet sauce that tastes like it has tamarind in it), lime crema, pickled red cabbage, sliced green green apple and cilantro. This is definitely my favourite and could consume mass quantities of it. Everything about it is perfect. From the cod, to the sauce, to the toppings. I need a plate full of these immediately.


La Carnita - Pollo Fritto
Pollo Frito – $4.75

Next was pollo frito. You get crispy chicken thigh, peanut mole, honey, Rossy’s hot sauce, green cabbage & salsa fresca. You can definitely taste the sweetness from the honey and peanut mole. The chicken was a little on the dry side, but still tasted great.


La Carnita - Beef Cheek
Beef Cheek – $4.75

Last one was beef cheek. You get ancho braised beef, lime avocado, green cabbage, pickled jalapeño and crispy shallots, and topped with a sprinkling of queso añejo. My second favourite taco, this is also all sorts of amazing. I loved the flavours with that little kick of heat. There is so much yum in this restaurant.

My order of picks for the tacos are as follows:

  1. In Cod We Trust
  2. Beef Cheek
  3. Tostada de Ceviche
  4. Carnita
  5. Pollo Frito
  6. Crispy Cotija


The Verdict

I love this place. The atmosphere is fun and upbeat. It’s a fantastic place to go with a group of friends for some food, drinks, and overall good fun. Am definitely returning with the Mr. He was so sad when he learnt that I wasn’t able to do take out for him! The waitress told me they don’t do takeout because the tacos wouldn’t keep well and it would get all soggy. Makes sense, but the Mr. was still sad when I got home. Next time, I will definitely save room for dessert!


The Place

La Carnita
01 College St
Toronto, ON

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Written by Jessica

March 25th, 2014 at 4:29 pm

Posted in Food,Restaurant