In Mexico a torta is a type of sandwich. This sandwich is popular throughout Mexico and you can taste a torta at Las Tortas on Cambie and 17th Avenue.
This is the only place in Vancouver that specializes in tortas which ensures you will get great quality and variety. Their tortas are delicious and filling. The owner/chef, Moises Toyber, was born and raised in Mexico City so you are definitely getting an authentic Mexican sandwich.
Las Tortas has been in business for five years. Moises enjoys providing a Mexican experience for his customers. Tortas are “different and yet the same” as our North American sandwich fare. The torta is a bun with a huge variety of fillings. Each torta is prepared with fresh sliced tomato, cabbage, pickled red onion, jalapeño, refried black beans, fresh guacamole, butter and mayonnaise. Mostly pretty familiar?
The buns are Mexican Telera bread baked specially by a local baker to Moises’ specifications. Crusty on the outside and soft on the inside. There are twenty-one (21) different torta choices on the menu. Each torta is grilled at the time of order using natural meat products (no processed meats or deli meats). Pretty much all the choices are Spanish names with english descriptions. This is where it is entirely different than our sandwiches given the choices and their Mexican-style flavouring.
You will enjoy the Mexican choices for refreshments. as well. Horchata is a non-alcoholic blend of rice, mike, cinnamon, vanilla and water. It is made from scratch daily so it is fresh. It has a strong cinnamon taste with a smooth creamy finish from the vanilla. It really cuts any spice you might get from your torta. Mexican soft drinks such as a Jarritos is provided with excellent natural flavouring. The freshly made lemonade is another tasty choice to pair with your torta.
You can order combos which include a drink and one side. The tortilla chips and the potato chips are a great choice. The chips come with a salsa sauce. Another side dish the guacamole sauce. Unlike some other places, the chips are not greasy and are freshly made each day. The salsa can be spicy while the guacamole was not chunky but smooth.
The Toluca City torta is made with Asada Steak (marinated flank steak), Chorizo sausage and the usual ingredients. The steak tasted of different Mexican spices and very flavourful. It contrasted well with the spicy bits of chorizo sausage. Pickled jalapeño and the cabbage was a nice contrast giving the sandwich different textures.
The most ordered torta is the Mexican Club with ham, pulled pork (oven baked), chorizo and Oaxaca cheese. Excellent flavour blend with no one flavour that dominates. The bun was perfectly toasted and not mushy despite all the fillings. The flavours were so comforting that you don’t notice the cheese.
Another popular torta is the Cubana comprised of pulled pork, ham, milanesa (a breaded beef cutlet pounded thin and pan fried) and Panela Cheese. Another sandwich that excites the mouth given the complexities of the various flavours. You need to open your mouth wide to accommodate this sandwich. The taste is worth the effort!
Not all the torta are meat dominated as this sandwich was a Fish Torta. On this night, the grilled fish was basa (white fish light and flaky). Chipotle mayonnaise combines with the usual fillings. The fish was not overcooked and very tasty. No one flavour overwhelmed your taste buds and the chipotle was a perfect pairing with the fish.
For a delicious ending to a dinner of tortas, Churros is the dessert of choice. Churros are a fried dough pastry snack very popular in Latino countries and cultures. These churros are freshly made and taste like the yummy PNE mini-donuts. The churros are not greasy and have a crunchy exterior with lots of cinnamon and sugar. An excellent sugar hit!
Las Tortas has gluten-free options and you can phone ahead and pick up. A very casual eatery with some outdoor seating in the warm weather. Prices for the tortas range from $8.50 to $11.50. Many choices for side dishes and there are vegetarian selections. If you are looking for the more usual Mexican cuisine of tacos, tostadas, quesadillas, burritos, tamales and huaraches you will find them on the menu. The tortas are large enough to be considered a meal for dinner especially if you order the combo.
3353 Cambie Street
Open Monday to Saturday 11:30 am to 8 pm