After leaving Tartine, we continued on our way to the Mission district. This area is known for its Mexican-American community. Living in Hawaii, we are deprived of good Mexican food, and I was longing to find out what it was that people on the mainland were raving about. Being a vegetarian, I decided to break from this in order to have the true experience. My sister had gone to … before, and we walked the streets looking for the same restaurant. We walked for quite a while, although I didn’t even notice how far we were going, because I was taking in all the new sights and attractions. The streets of Mission are filled with vendors selling bags, clothing, and souvineers. There are also surprisingly an number of Chinese vendors and restaurants—something that sticks out like a sore thumb.
I imagined that we were looking for a run-down mom-and-pop taqueria however when we got to our destination La Corneta Taqueria turned out to be a chain-type restaurant with clean tables and murals painted on the walls.
We looked over the menu on the wall, ordered from the lady behind the counter (who initially spoke to us in Spanish) and proceeded to watch our burrito get made behind the glass barrier. On one end there were people cooking up smoking batches of meat that filled the restaurant with a smoky aroma. Further down the line were people filling burittos, nachos, and tacos with fillings. Finally, at another counter after the register a man stood making freshly squeezed orange juice.
Burritos are filled with your choice of meat (various types of steak, chicken, pork, sausage, and tofu), beans (black, whole, or refried), salsa (mild, hot, verde, roja), and tortilla (corn, flour, whole wheat, and spinach).
We ordered the “Super Buririto” with carne asada. This one included, meat, rice, beans, cheese, sour cream, salsa, lettuce, and guacamole. It was a gigantic burrito and the fillings were overflowing! After eating it, I understood why Californianas moving to Hawaii were always in search of good Mexican food. The meat was tender and smoky, lending an amazing flavor throughout the burrito. The best part was that the tortilla was tender and chewy, and as you bit into it, it stuck to your teeth and the roof of your mouth. I enjoyed the texture of the tortilla in combination with the fillings. My only criticism was that we should have ordered the verde or roja salsa, because with the "hot" salsa, I could barely taste the spiciness. This wasn’t so bad though, because it allowed me to appreciate the other flavors of the burrito.
All orders also come with freshly made tortilla chips. We barely ate these, however, because we were so stuffed from sharing just one buritto!!
Although this was unlike any burrito I would find in Hawaii, I think I would try going somewhere else if I ever go back there. The ambience felt too much like a chain restaurant. I think I want to visit somewhere a bit more Mexican and less American.
La Corneta Taqueria
2731 Misson Street
San Francisco, CA 94110